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Monday, 26 December 2011 10:15

Medfield failure is not an option for Intel

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Next three generations already on the drawing board

Intel Mobile and Communications Group exec Mike Bell believes failure is not an option for the company’s upcoming Medfield mobile chip.

Medfield is Intel’s first proper SoC and it is designed to take on ARM chips in the tablet and smartphone arena. Clearly it has a tough job ahead of it and Intel’s future mobile strategy depends on the success, or failure, of the new chip.

Although the first products based on Medfield are still months away, Bell reckons the new chip should be quite competitive successful. Intel CEO Paul Otellini recently announced that the first products should appear in the first half of 2012.

"Based on our own internal research, we think Medfield is going to be very competitive in the time frame that it ships against anything in the market," said Bell. "We already have the next three generations on the drawing board and in process.”

Intel is sticking with the tried and tested 32nm process for the first generation Medfield, but next gen chips, scheduled for late 2012, will be manufactured in 22nm.

It seems Intel is finally taking the mobile market seriously. A couple of weeks back the outfit thoroughly reshuffled its mobile business and Bell emerged as one of the leading lights. Otellini has reportedly given Bell and his team access to all resources and assets they could need to complete the Medfield project. Bell has quite a bit of experience in the field, as he homed his skills at Apple and Palm.

More here.

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+3 #1 SydneyBlue120d 2011-12-26 11:14
If Intel can beat in every aspect TI OMAP5430, Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 MSM8960 and Samsung Exynos 5250 this could be interesting but I'm not sold on the idea they can do it, at least with this generation...
0 #2 dicobalt 2011-12-27 00:30
I agree failure is not an option in the phone/tablet markets. I just want to see the look on the faces of everyone who said x86 can't run at low power lol
+1 #3 Jay 2011-12-27 03:25
Performance really isn't the issue, pretty certain it will give 2x more performance than ARM chips but if it gives 3/4th the battery life of ARM chips it'll be mission accomplished. How will the graphics part stack up though? iPhone4S, Galaxy SII have really nice graphic games will Intel match ARM in graphics too? Tough one to answer!
+1 #4 fteoath64 2011-12-27 10:18
Quoting Jay:
iPhone4S, Galaxy SII have really nice graphic games will Intel match ARM in graphics too? Tough one to answer!

Intel's part probably looks well on paper. In silicon. it will have to do real 2X cpu power and at least match gpu power while giving same or better battery life. Can it be done by Q2-2012 ?. Not a chance!.

It will be beaten in gpu for sure and battery life will be about 50-60% of the ARM equivalent. Its price point way higher as well. It is like climbing Everest with a donkey!

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