Intel Readies Quad-Core Mobile Chips - Analyst

Mobile Computers May Get Four Processing Cores

by Anton Shilov
04/14/2006 | 03:13 PM

Intel Corp. may not only be making central processing units (CPUs) with four processing engines for high-performance workstation, desktop and server machines, but may also target powerful laptops with its quad-core chips, according to an analyst.


Jim McGregor, principal analyst of Microprocessor Report from In-Stat, said in his recent report that Intel is also planning a quad-core mobile processor. TG Daily web-site claims that the observer believed that Intel’s quad-core mobile processor could be compatible with “Santa Rosa” platform, “which will be launched in Q2 of 2007 as a refresh for the Merom processor”.

The code-named Santa Rosa platform and Crestine chipset will boost the processor system bus speed of the processor known under Merom name – expected to be introduced later this year – to 800MHz, which should significantly increase performance of this dual-core chip in multimedia tasks that require high bandwidth, according to earlier reports. It is yet uncertain whether Crestine chipset will support higher-speed dual-channel DDR2 memory, but in the past years memory bus clock-speed was usually the same as processor system bus speed.

According to the new report, Intel asserted its technical prowess and squashed concerns about losing market share to its rival by opening the doors to the new Core micro-architecture and the future-product roadmaps at the spring 2006 Intel Developer Forum (IDF). The report by Mr. McGregor claims that the result would be an aggressive transition to the Core micro-architecture for all mobile PC, desktop PC, and volume server dual- and quad-core processors within the following 12 months. The transition would begin with the Merom mobile PC, Conroe desktop PC, and Sossaman server processors, beginning in Q3 2006.

Earlier Intel officially showcased its first quad-core processor code-named Clovertown, which is a product that features two separate chips on a single piece of substrate. Additionally, Intel plans to introduce quad-core Kentsfield, next-generation “extreme” desktop processor. It is highly likely that Kentsfield features two Conroe dual-core chips on the same piece of substrate, thus, providing four execution engines. The Kentsfield is expected to have four cores, 4MB or 8MB cache, 1066MHz or 1333MHz processor system bus and other characteristics similar to Conroe.

Intel did not comment on the news-story.