A new mobile Atom chip should be out before Microsoft finally gets its head round tablets, with Windows 8
Intel will have its tablet-focused Clover Trail Atom chip out byt the time Microsoft ships Windows 8, according to reports.
Intel executives see the combination of Intel’s Clover Trail platform and “Cloverview” processor with Windows 8 as a strong entrant in the burgeoning tablet space and a big player in netbooks and other devices, according to a report on the site This Is My Next.
Atom plus Windows 8
Bill Kircos, director of product and technology media relations for Intel, told the site that Intel’s upcoming platform with Microsoft’s OS will be a “nice one-two chip-software punch.” The Cloverview chip is being designed to work with Windows 8, the next generation, tablet-oriented Microsoft OS, whose tile interface was unveiled earlier this month,.
Kircos didn’t give any timetable for when the Clover Trail platform would be released, though he indicated it would happen by the time Windows 8 was released, and possibly sooner. Windows 8 is due sometime in 2012.
Cloverview, a 32-nanometer processor first talked about at the Intel Developer Forum in China in April, is part of Intel’s larger intent to become a larger player in the mobile computing space, particularly in such devices as tablets and smartphones. Intel is looking to push its x86 architecture — including its Core and Atom chips — into an arena currently dominated by chips designed by ARM Holdings and made by such vendors as Qualcomm, Nvidia, Samsung and Texas Instruments.
Intel officials are laying out an aggressive roadmap for their excursion into the mobile space. The chip maker in April rolled out the Atom Z670 “Oak Trail” platform for tablets, with officials saying they expect 35 Oak Trail-based systems to be released this year.
In addition, Intel is rolling out its “Cedar Trail” platform for tablets that should begin appearing toward the end of 2011, and its “Medfield” chips for smartphones, which should be in devices that hit the market in early 2012.
In May, Intel unveiled its Tri-Gate transistor technology, a three-dimensional architecture that company executives said will drive down power consumption and ramp up the performance of their Core and Atom chips. The Tri-Gate technology will first appear in the “Ivy Bridge” platform, the 22-nanometer shrink of the current “Sandy Bridge” architecture.
Intel is also talking about what officials call a new notebook segment, which they call “ultrabooks,” Intel-powered laptops that will offer tablet-like features.
Windows 8 also is expected to give ARM chips a boost, not only in mobile devices but also in such systems as laptops, because the operating system will run on various ARM-powered systems. Microsoft executives made the announcement during the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show in January.