Intel: processor performance up 300 percent by 2010

Chip power race for more grunt

By 2010, processor performance will increase 300 percent per watt as users demand eight times more grunt for encoding.

Speaking at the Intel Developer Forum yesterday, Intel president and CEO Paul Otellini announced the development of 15 products built on its 45nm silicon manufacturing technology and showcased the experimental 300mm² chip.

Otellini said the company, which began manufacturing 65nm silicon technology in 2005, will probably ship 45 nanometer-based processors, flash, and chips in the second half of 2007, while industry-first quad core processors will be distributed in November this year.

"By the end of the decade we will deliver a 300 percent increase in performance per watt over today's processors," Otellini said.

"A single 'You Tube' stream today will hobble a PC from just a few years ago [and] as we move to high definition video, users will need eight times greater performance just for encoding.

"With 45nm technology on track for production in the second half of 2007 as planned, for the first time [Intel] has 15, 45nm products already in development across desktop, mobile, and enterprise segments."

The first of the quad core processors, designed for PCs and high-volume servers, is called the Intel Core2 Extreme quad-core processor and features a dramatic 67 percent performance improvement over current Intel Core2 Extreme processors and will be targeted at gamers and content creators.

Intel's mainstream Core2 Quad processor will be shipped in early 2007 along with the server-designed Quad-Core Intel Xeon processor 5300 series for dual processor servers and a 50-watt Quad-Core Intel Xeon processor L5310 for blade servers.

Otellini said Intel is also working on the "ultra-mobile PC", which he claims could result in devices with power consumption 10x lower than today's laptops by 2008.

Intel is investing in nano technology creation methods such as submersed, dry and extreme ultraviolet lithography in order to shrink the sub-components of chip transistors. This increases chip performance, reduces energy consumption and cuts the manufacturing costs. The company may use extreme ultraviolet lithography for the 22nm technology manufacturing, which is planned for 2011.

The Intel Developer Forum is in its tenth year as a global technology forum for hardware and software developers to confer on Intel-based platforms.

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