After 2001, Intel's upcoming IA-64 chip architecture will split in two, with separate platforms for high end and low end machines.
This became clear as further details of the IA-64 roadmap leaked out this week, indicating Intel's plans until around 2003.
According to Gordon Graylish, Intel's marketing director for the Emea region, the IA-64 architecture will split after the introduction, in 2001, of the second generation of the 64-bit platform, codenamed McKinley.
The two planned processors are codenamed Madison (high end) and Deerfield (low end), and will both be manufactured in a 0.13 micron process.
Deerfield will be akin to an IA-64 implementation of the current 32-bit processor for consumer and budget PCs, Celeron. It will eventually supplant the IA-32 line of low end CPUs, although not before the current chips have been succeeded by at least four upgrades, the first three codenamed Tanner, Cascades and Foster.p> Graylish confirmed that Intel doesn't want people to get too excited about IA-64 too soon. Its plans for the continuation of IA-32 make it clear that it anticipates this being the volume platform for some time.
The Foster processor, which will be a contemporary of Merced, will offer "outstanding performance for 32-bit volume apps". Said Graylish: "We think we've got the timeline about right. There's not much requirement for 64-bit today, but in five years' time there will be."
Asked why, in that case, people should even bother about 64-bit before McKinley, Graylish pointed out that the lead times in server and application deployment meant it was important for corporations to use Merced initially. A 12-18 month enterprise deployment cycle would then have them poised for the arrival of McKinley.
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