SAN FRANCISCO: As Intel looks to close up its annual IDF conference, the company may be leaveing some attendees in a bit of a crunch.
Throughout the conference, a major theme was consolidation, doing more with less and putting more components onto fewer chips. The company sought to sell developers on a more versatile line of processors and platforms which were able to operate faster than ever using the same or less power to do so.
The crunch began with the show's opening keynote address. Chief product officer Dadi Perlmutter provided an update on the 22nm Haswell platform. While the chip has been widely expected to take over for the Core line of chips in the PC and notebook spaces, Perlmutter said that the Haswell chips were headed on to even bigger things, including possible use in the high-end tablet and niche server markets.
Later in the day, a panel of Intel Fellows would explain precisely why the company has such high hopes for Haswell. The group outlined the advanced power-saving chips which can allow Haswell to offer performance equal to current Core processors while running at half power and double performance during peak loads. Addionally, Haswell will have the ability to perform tasks in various stages of dormancy, eliminating the need for a system to be fully powered off or powered on.
Similar features have been implemented to the Atom family of mobile processors, allowing the chips to maximise power usage and reduce battery drain. Intel engineers described a process known as "Burst" in which a chip would dramatically spike its peak energy consumption over short periods of time. In doing so, a CPU could maximise its compute power and achieve tasks much faster and more efficiently than by operating at a constant rate with a lower energy intake.
The chip crunch theme continued through the first day of the show as the company announced that its 22nm Xeon chips, which are able to dramatically increase the density of onboard transistors, were entering their final trial stages and could be going into production early next year.
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