Intel Expects 35 Tablets with Atom Inside Next Year

Leading PC Makers Prep Atom-Based Tablets

by Anton Shilov
12/09/2010 | 06:21 PM

Chief executive officer of Intel Corp. said at a conference with investors that next year over 35 tablets based on Intel's system-on-chip with Atom processing core will be shipped next year. The head of the world's largest maker of microprocessors noted that the largest PC makers in the world were interested in designing tablets featuring x86 technology.

 

"On tablets, our strategy is very simple: We're going to offer best-in-class hardware around Atom system-on-chips and we are going to make sure that we support all the viable operating systems. Listed here are some of the 35 design wins we have in tablets, a number of them on Windows, a number of them on Android and [a number of them on] MeeGo. Some of these tablets are on the market today and you can buy them. The tablets that are on the market today are from [companies] like AT&T and Cisco and they are aimed at the enterprise customers. The consumer products will be rolled out over the first half of next year," said Paul Otellini during his speech at the Barclays Capital Technology Conference 2010.

35 tablets is a pretty high number as at present there are only two truly popular tablets on the market: Apple iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab. Going forward there will not only be more PCs in slate form-factor, but there will be different types of them: some will offer high performance along with Microsoft Windows OS, other will be small and lightweight.

"We have two flavours of products [for tablets]. One carries our PC legacy and is code-named Oak Trail and can run all the Windows environments, which is important for people who would like to take advantage not only of the Internet, but also the PC peripheral capability, such as printers. [...] We have more [energy efficient] SoC called Moorestown that we are focusing on people who want most lightweight [devices with] longest battery life. It does not support Windows.

It is noteworthy that all top manufacturers of personal computers are designing tablets with Intel Atom-based system-on-chip products. The fact that Acer, Asustek Computer, Dell, Fujitsu, Lenovo and Toshiba plan to release Intel-based tablets proves not only the fact that slate form-factor is now officially recognized by the industry, but also the fact that Intel's offerings for tablets are competitive against those by ARM camp.

Mr. Otellini also claimed that  the real shift to Intel architecture in terms of consumer devices would come next year and for now, the iPad is not hampering sales of notebooks as some have suggested.

"I don't think tablets are cannibalizing noteboooks, but they are a competitor for discretionary income," he said. "On the other hand, I have not seen a kid who takes a tablet to school versus a laptop. So I see [the iPad] as a fun device that is additive to the market," said the head of Intel.