Back in February, we noted that Intel has slowed down its roadmap for roughly two quarters over the last three years. Where the company had a habit of launching new processors and chipsets in Q4, a few unforseen product cycle delays have displaced its usual launch schedule into Q2 of every year. While March is technically the last month of Q1, it is always still possible that the company could delay Haswell and Lynx Point by a few weeks, and thus we remain skeptically optimistic about the March 2013 date.
Intel's plans for Haswell have spanned as far back as late 2007, when the company released a product roadmap vaguely sketching out its 22nm product plans for the post-Nehalem era. Nevertheless, Haswell is known in the company's Tick-Tock cadence model as a "tock," signifying that it will be based on a completely new platform and physical socket size just like its Nehalem and Sandy Bridge predecessors.
Lynx Point as a chipset marks Intel's official switch to full SATA III 6Gbps support for all natively integrated SATA ports, in addition to a new default of six (6) native USB 3.0 ports. Of course, the chipset and its complementing 22nm Haswell-based CPUs will be based on a new physical socket size - Socket LGA 1150. Yes, that means that current users of Intel's lovely Socket LGA 1156 and Socket LGA 1155 mainstream chipsets get to look forward to selling their motherboards once more to make room for Lynx Point containing 5 to 6 less pins than its predecessors.