Intel announces Atom x3, x5, x7 branding

February 26, 2015 // 11:37 a.m.

Tags: #atom #atom-x #atom-x3 #atom-x5 #atom-x7 #core-i #cpu #intel #mobile #naming #nomenclature #processor #soc #system-on-chip

Intel has announced that it is launching a new chip branding programme which will see its low-power Atom parts given similar numerical identifiers to its mainstream Core series: x3, x5, and x7.

Intel's Core family launched with no clear way for the less technically-minded to tell the difference between entry-level and high-end parts - aside from looking for bigger numbers, both in the part numbers and their price. Its most recent releases shifted to a simple numerical identifier which split the Core range into three families: the entry-level Core i3, the mid-range Core i5, and the top-tier Core i7. While there's a certain amount of crossover - especially in the mobile segment, where a top-end i5 may outperform an entry-level i7 in certain scenarios - it's at least a handy at-a-glance reference for Intel's target market.

Intel's low-power Atom range, designed primarily for mobile and embedded use, hasn't been so lucky. As a result, buyers have been left wondering whether an Atom E3815 is better or worse than an Atom E3805, and how both compare to the Atom C2558. That is, until today's announcement from Intel that the Atom range is to adopt a similar naming convention to the Core range, but with a distinguishing letter: x.

Under the new naming system, the Intel Atom x3 family will offer 'basic but genuine Intel-level tablet, phablet and smartphone performance' while the mid-range Atom x5 'has more capabilities and features for people who want an even better experience.' As with the Core range, the Atom x7 will be Intel's flagship offering the highest performance and functionality out of the family.

The new range sees the Atom x3, x5 and x7 families positioned beneath the low-power mobile-centric Core m, while the Core i3, Core i5 and Core i7 sit further up the range as a more mainstream offering. The new naming convention, Intel has confirmed, will be launched as part of the next generation of Atom chips; the current models will not be retrospectively renamed.
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