For decades, chip makers were racing to develop the fastest, most powerful chips possible. While that race is still underway, it just doesn’t feel as important as it once did — since a relatively sluggish Intel or AMD processor is still plenty fast enough to handle most computing tasks such as web surfing, editing documents, and playing or even editing multimedia projects. But there’s another race going on as chip-makers try to push out energy efficient chips that provide a decent user experience while prolonging laptop battery life. I like where this is going.
We already knew that Intel had a new line of ULV (Ultra Low Voltage) chips planned. Now Engadget has published a leaked product roadmap which shows that Intel is going all out on the ULV front, with a number of chips for ultrathin notebooks.
That includes a few new Core i5 and i7 chips which should be available later this year which will use about 15W of power for both the CPU and graphics processor. These chips are designed to balance performance and voltage. And next year Intel will launch its Huron River platform with “low voltage” and “ultra low voltage” chips that will bundle Bluetooth, WiMAX, and wireless display capabilities onto the 32nm chipset.