Intel surfs into the future

Intel has given press and industry insiders at its recent Intel Developer Forum (IDF) event in San Francisco, California, USA, a sneak peek of future internet-related technologies. With these, the firm claims to be focussing on making web use a more personal and productive experience, wherever the user is in the world.

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By  Matthew Wade Published  March 12, 2006

Intel has given press and industry insiders at its recent Intel Developer Forum (IDF) event in San Francisco, California, USA, a sneak peek of future internet-related technologies. With these, the firm claims to be focussing on making web use a more personal and productive experience, wherever the user is in the world. “The internet is increasingly the central medium in people’s lives, the place where we go for news, entertainment and education, and to extend our social lives,” commented Samir Al-Schamma, Intel’s General Manager for the GCC region. “Emerging applications such as mashups, blogs, podcasts and RSS make the internet an even more personal and interactive experience, and people want to carry those experiences with them. The next stage of internet growth is to make this ‘real Internet’ mobile.” The next generation of Intel’s mobile Centrino technology, codenamed Santa Rosa, was detailed for the first time at IDF. Designed to give users better overall performance and enhanced graphics capabilities, plus improved wireless connectivity and improved security and manageability, this suite of mobile technologies should include a more powerful mobile microprocessor, an improved graphics chipset (codenamed Crestline), an IEEE 802.11n Wi-Fi adapter (codenamed Kedron), as well as Intel-optimised advanced management and security solutions. Santa Rosa will also include Intel’s NAND flash-based platform accelerator, codenamed Robson, which Intel claims enables much more rapid boot-up times and power savings too. Santa Rosa-based notebooks should hit the market in the first half of 2007 and look set to feature Intel’s next-generation dual-core mobile microprocessor, codenamed Merom. Intel also showcased two new concept PCs that aim to offer wide usability through their offering multiple modes of operation. Based around innovative form factors and ergonomic configurations, these systems include features that Intel hopes will spark new design ideas for OEMs, such as integrated WiMAX and wireless WAN technology, hard drive backup capabilities and also, broadcast digital TV reception capabilities. On a handheld level, the firm premiered its family of next-generation application processors for such devices, codenamed Monahans, which it is in fact already sampling to some customers. Based on the third generation of Intel’s Xscale technology, the Monahans platform family include wireless Intel SpeedStep with MusicMax technology, Wireless MMX2 and Intel VideoMax technology, which is designed to offer high energy-efficiency and enhanced performance in handheld devices playing both audio and video. Intel also provided details about its work in Mobile PCs (UMPC), a new category of small form factor mobile devices that it expects to play a part in our technical futures. The firm expects the first UMPC devices, running on Intel silicon, to be launched by major OEMs in the next couple of months. Last but not least, on the WiMAX (wide area wireless) front, the company premiered its first single-chip multi-band Wi-Fi/WiMAX radio, codenamed Ofer, which it claims will enable users to connect their laptops to Wi-Fi or WiMAX networks worldwide. Intel also announced that it will deliver a mobile WiMAX PCMCIA card in the second half of this year, enabling WiMAX in standard laptop PCs. However, this product offer looks unlikely to make a big impact in the Middle East, as large-scale WiMAX trials are not yet up and running in any territories here.

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