Microsoft’s Surface tablet may not be doing as well as the company hoped, but Intel is going full speed ahead on tablet processors. The chip maker intends to release five new Ivy Bridge CPUs for slate computers that feature low power consumption without, one hopes, a hit to performance. They will be available in the first quarter of 2013.

Perhaps it’s not a coincidence that the Surface Pro will also be out in the first quarter. It’s a good bet that these new chips may power that tablet and many other Windows 8 based slates, hybrids, and convertibles.

Intel Ivy Bridge CPU for Tablets

The new “Mobile Y” chips mostly have the new Core i branding with one lone Pentium in the mix and will clock in at 1.1 – 1.5 GHz. The Core i5 and i7 chips have Turbo Boost ability for overclocking up to 2.6GHz. Good news is that the Core i3, i5, and i7 models get Intel’s HD Graphics 4000.

Overall, these will be much more powerful than the Intel Atom CPU some Windows tablet manufacturers still employ, yet will hopefully get close to that chip’s efficiency.

Long battery life coupled with good performance is the holy grail, especially with tablets. And Intel has some catch up to do in this category when it comes to that balance. New ARM-based chips are on the horizon from Qualcomm, Samsung, and other big players. ARM processors can only run the RT version of Windows, which isn’t all that popular right now.

Intel’s x86 processors support full Windows 8, but apparently tablets with this operating system aren’t exactly flying off the shelf. Issues with the operating system itself aside, getting the performance/efficiency balance right can go a long way toward making tablets people will snatch up without hesitation.

It will be interesting to see the tablet crop that comes out early next year.

via MobileGeeks; image credit: VR-Zone

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10 replies on “Intel Reveals New Ivy Bridge CPUs for Tablets”

  1. Windows 8 tablets “aren’t exactly flying off the shelf” probably because they aren’t sitting on the shelf in the first place. Here we are, nearly seven weeks after the launch of Windows 8, and only the Samsung Ativ Smart PC tablets appear to be available.

    Where are the HP Envy X2, the Lenovo Thinkpad 2, the Dell Latitude 10, the Asus Vivo Tab 810? Missing in action, it would appear, despite having been promised by the manufacturers for release at the launch of Windows 8.

  2. Any chance we will see these processors (at least the lower end version)in future netbooks? I still feel much more confortable with a netbook than with a tablet; I find it far more usefull.

  3. i think the main factor for low x86 Windows device sales has been availability, with more models now becoming available things should get clearer regarding demand.

  4. So they’re mostly just cutting the base clock in order to reduce the TDP. The average power consumption may be the same/more due to the slower CPU possibly being under load for a longer period or be at a higher SpeedStep than current CPUs for the same amount of work.

    Also, are these Pentiums that Intel has been releasing based on the same Core i architecture? If so, are there differences other than clock speed between the Core i3?

    1. My understanding is that the Pentiums are the Core i3s without hyperthreading.

    2. All Intel processors start out the same for a given line. In this case the 13 watt Ivy Bridge. They are then fed power. Those that produce the least amount of heat are clocked higher and are labeled Core i7 while those that produce the most heat are clocked lower and become Pentium. Amount of cache, enabled features, etc are added after the fact.

      Production cost of an i7 vs Celeron is pennies for Intel (mostly cost of cache memory). It’s no surprise they want you buying i5 and i7 hardware.

      1. That’s nice but do you have any info on the actual differences in features?

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