Intel introduced 15 new Pentium III and Pentium III Xeon processors in San Jose on Monday based on 0.18 micron process technology as part of its most wide ranging chip rollout ever.
But, as expected, the supplier failed to announce its 820 chipset, which works with the new processors and is based on memory enhancing technology from Rambus, because it said that certain iterations had experienced intermittent errors at extreme temperatures and voltages.
The two companies announced several weeks ago that they were working to resolve the bugs and Intel said the 820 would ship by the end of the year. Linley Gwennap, an analyst with Microdesign Resources, confirmed: "They have the problem solved and are testing the fix."
Intel claimed that its new Pentium III and III Xeons boosted the performance of its older 0.25 micron Pentiums by 28 per cent, however.
Michael Splinter, senior vice president and general manager of Intel?s technology and manufacturing group, said: "The 0.18 micron technology is the power behind the products introduced today. The technology, as we evolve it, will take us to over 1 GHz in processor speed, arriving by the end of 2000."
The new processor family includes nine new desktop Pentium III processors, ranging from 500 to 733MHz and the first mobile Pentium III chips. Most of the new chips support a new 133MHz system bus rather than the traditional 100MHz bus to improve bandwidth. System buses move data between the processor, system memory and other PC components.
Desktops running the new processors are due to follow from vendors such as Dell Computer, IBM, Compaq Computer and Hewlett-Packard later this year. Intel also unveiled its new 840 chip set today for use in workstations and other high end systems.
Microdesign?s Gwennap said the new announcement now made Intel and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) "neck and neck" in the performance stakes. AMD's Athlon chip, which runs at 700MHz, had previously boasted a higher clock speed than the Pentium, but, not to be outdone, AMD plans to launch a 750MHz Athlon by the first quarter of next year.
Intel?s new mobile Pentium III chips will also run at speeds of 400MHz, 450MHz and 500MHz. Robert Jecmen, vice president of Intel's business group and general manager of its mobile and handheld products group, said the offerings support 100MHz buses compared with the mobile Pentium II's 66 MHz.
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