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Intel Corp. demonstrated at IDF Spring Japan prototypes of computers – a laptop and a desktop – utilizing the company’s yet-to-be-announced mobile dual-core processor code-named Yonah. The chip ran at speed close to that of current mainstream mobile processor.

Intel Yonah Operates at 1467MHz

Intel Yonah processor is a yet another derivative of the so-called Banias architecture, which inherits many peculiarities of the P6 architecture. Yonah will have two processing engines and will be produced using 65nm process technology late this year with commercial availability scheduled for Q1 2006. The target clock-rate for Yonah processor is unknown, but during the demonstration, which included typical notebook workflow, the chip was clocked at 1467MHz, which is nearly inline with today’s mainstream mobile chips, thus, as time goes, the speed of Yonah may scale up towards 2.0GHz or above.


Photo by PC Watch

Intel at IDF Spring 2005 in the USA disclosed three new technologies planned for Yonah that will improve the performance, power and design of mobile platforms. They include Intel Digital Media Boost, an instruction set for rich digital multimedia content creation; Intel Advanced Thermal Manager, for enhanced thermal monitoring, accuracy and responsiveness; and Intel Dynamic Power Coordination, which can automatically adjust the performance and power between the two processing cores on demand.

During the demonstration at Intel Developer Forum in Tokyo, Japan, Intel showcased Yonah-based mobile computer, packed with an array of multimedia features, including a wide-screen and a web-cam, as well as a very slim and stylish desktop PC. It is unclear yet whether any of computer makers will actually employ the Yonah processor into desktops.


Photo by PC Watch

Intel plans to ship Yonah mobile processor for revenue in late 2005 and officially launch the platform in 2006. Intel believes that by the end of 2006 more than 70% of performance mobile processors it produces at that time will be dual-core chips.

The Yonah processor is expected to be succeeded by Intel’s code-named Merom chip in the second half of 2005. The Merom is yet another dual-core processor, but with a new, or completely revamped architecture, which will enable a set of important technologies on mobile computers, including Intel virtualization technology, Intel’s LaGrande technology as well as EM64T, EDB, EIST and AMT2, and which possible derivative code-named Conroe will eventually find itself in desktop applications, according to Intel’s plans.

Future Notebooks to Offer More Communication Options, Increase Battery Life

Intel earlier disclosed certain peculiarities of its platform beyond the Sonoma, the one code-named Napa. Napa Platform will inherit all the major innovations of the Sonoma, such as PCI Express, DDR2 memory, etc., but will add next-generation integrated graphics engine code-named Calistoga, new power management tools that will increase battery life to over 5 hours, as well as WiMAX and 3G options.

Adding new functions and capabilities to mobile platforms taxes battery life and can limit notebook designs. Intel is working to reverse this trend by developing power state management techniques and new battery technologies essential to extending laptop battery life and keeping form factors small and light-weight.

Intel last year introduced the Intel Battery Life Optimization Program to help resolve some of the power management and platform configuration hurdles to achieving all-day battery life. The company will work with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and original design manufacturers (ODMs) to provide technical guidance on power delivery and power management architecture. Intel will also develop guidelines for optimizing power saving features using Intel hardware and software ingredients that OEMs/ODMs can design-in for greater battery life gains.

Intel said at IDF in September, 2004, it was working with its industry partners to achieve 8-hour battery life of a typical notebook by 2010. The platform approach to tackle the battery life issue includes minimizing consumption of key-system components, such as CPU, HDD, chipset, WLAN adapter and display, as well as improving batteries.

According to Intel’s estimation, around 60% of notebooks shipping nowadays support wireless LAN. The company projects 90% and 96% notebooks to sport WLAN in 2005 and 2006 respectively.

With the majority of mobile PCs supporting Wi-Fi, Intel now pays more attention to more wireless communication technologies, such as WiMAX, that is said to be to DSL/Cable broadband the same as cellular telephony was to landline telephony. The microprocessor giant expects about 5 million WiMAX enabled notebooks to ship in 2006, around 20 million in 2007 and over 40 million in 2008.

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