Next-gen platforms under the spotlight

Written by Wil Harris

September 26, 2006 | 19:48

Tags: #idf #quad-core

Companies: #intel

Intel has been laying out some facts and figures about its development strategy going forward over the next few years.

Intel has invested $9 billion in two new fabs to produce processors on a 45nm process. The current Core 2 Duo chips are produced on 65nm, and 45 is the next logical step. The two new fabs are in Arizona and Israel. Currently, there are 15 products in development on the new process.

There are two new microarchitectures and processes currently on the roadmap. In 2006 we have seen the introduction of the Core microarchitecture and the mass production of 65nm. In 2008 we see Nehalem, the next microarchitecture produced on 45nm. In 2010 we see Gesher, produced on 32nm.

This product cycle over the next 4 years will see a 300% improvement on the performance per watt on Intel processors. In a stab at their arch-rivals, it was pointed out that whilst Intel had shipped 40m 65nm processors, the current total from anyone else in the industry was zero.

Otellini showed off a new concept chip which integrated more cores and functionality to give a teraflop of performance on a single chip - more performance than would have been expected from an entire room of servers 10 years ago. Acknowledging AMD's success with Opteron, he said that Woodcrest has "Now regained our leadership in the server marketplace".

We also found out a little more about the next-generation Centrino platform, called Santa Rosa. It will integrate Core 2 Duo, new Vista Aero-capable 965GM integrated graphics, 802.11n networking for 300mbps wireless speed and NAND flash directly integrated onto the motherboard.

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