Intel to deliver MIDs to market within 60 days

Written by Tim Smalley

April 2, 2008 | 06:13

Tags: #atom #chandrasehker #compatibility #consumption #device #events #idf #idf-spring-2008 #internet #mid #performance #power #processor #states

Companies: #intel

Intel’s Anand Chandrasehker has revealed this morning that the company will deliver Mobile Internet Devices to market within 60 days. He revealed that the company had already started shipping products for revenue to its customers.

Today is a historic day for Intel and the high-tech industry as we deliver our first-ever Intel Atom processor and surround it with a great package of technology,” he said.

Mix in the incredible innovation coming from our fellow device makers and software vendors, and we will change the way consumers will come to know and access the World Wide Web. These forthcoming MIDs, and some incredible longer-term plans our customers are sharing with us, will show how small devices can deliver a big Internet experience.

Chandrasehker believes that the Intel Atom processors not only deliver good performance, but also maintain widespread compatibility. He showed a chart of compatibility with existing web pages compared to competing mobile products using ARM-based processors and the number of webpage errors on ARM-based processors was considerable.

The Internet was developed on IA, and that’s why we have great compatibility,” said Chandrasehker.

He then showed some research Intel has done in Japan, where 88 percent of people that have tried to access the Internet from a mobile device have been dissatisfied. This will change with the introduction of the Intel-based MID, according to Chandrasehker.

Intel’s Atom processor delivers between 4.1 and 6.5 fold performance improvements over its competition when it comes to Internet browsing and will ship at speeds of up to 1.86GHz. They support Advanced SpeedStep Technology along with a new C6 deep power down state that reduces idle power consumption by a factor of ten.

The Intel Atom processor is an incredibly lazy processor,” he said, while running some power consumption demonstrations. He loaded a webpage and power consumption spiked massively, but as soon as it had finished, the machine returned back to a C6 power state, where it consumed less than 100mW. This will allow for longer battery life—something that’s paramount in such a device—and he said that the design team worked on a one percent performance for no more than one percent of power rule.

By this, Chandrasehker means that if performance was to increase by one percent, the power consumption would increase by no more than that – if it did, the tradeoff would be too great for this kind of device.

He showed some compute-intensive applications running on Silverthorne, which now falls under the Intel Atom processor brand, including Cinebench 9.5 and Half-Life 2. Yes, he was running HL2 on a Centrino Atom CRB (customer reference platform)… and more impressively, it looked reasonably playable with decent enough image quality. I have no idea what resolution or the exact settings he was running it at, but the fact it was running HL2 with decent image quality is an impressive feat on its own.

There’s plenty more to come on Intel’s Atom processors and the push towards a mobile Internet experience, so we’ll be back with more on this later. For now, you can discuss the announcements in the forums.
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