Dell plans to interoduce a notebook featuring two central processing units (CPUs), one from Intel Corp. and another based on ARM micro-architecture. The laptop will combine long battery life thanks to ARM along with high performance due to power of Intel’s chip.
Dell Latitude E4200 and E4300 models will include both Intel and ARM processors and are due to be released soon, according to a news-story by DigiTimes web-site. The notebooks will include a basic interface that provides near-instant access to e-mail, calendar, attachments, contacts and the Web without booting into the system's main operating system (OS). During such operations the system will use only ARM processor, which guarantees long battery life. Intel’s CPU is only used when high-performance is needed.
While the functionality provided by ARM-based “domain” seems to be the same as that of smartphones or personal digital assistants, since notebooks have full-size screens and keyboards, it is much easier to read emails or visit basic Internet pages.
Theoretically it should be possible to use only Intel processor at minimum voltage and clock-speed to make essential tasks from basic interface. The system will still have a benefit of longer battery life since hard disk drive will not be utilized.
It is unclear how much extra customers will have to pay for ARM processor and supporting logic inside their “Intel Inside” notebooks.