Intel vows to triple chip performance by 2010

Moving along a path of energy-efficient computing, Intel has pledged technology evolution in microprocessors that will improve performance per watt by 300 percent by the end of the decade.

Speaking to attendees at the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco, Intel president and CEO Paul Otellini said this goal would be achieved through continued evolution of Intel's semiconductor manufacturing technology.

Today, the company uses 65nm process for microprocessor design and by 2008, it plans to reduce that to a 45nm design process. By the end of 2010, Otellini said, Intel aims to achieve 32nm microprocessor design.

"We're not going to slow down on Moore's Law; we have the design and capability to make it happen," the Intel president said. He was referring to Gordon Moore, co-founder of Intel, who made a popular observation - or forecast - that the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles every two years.

Otellini said Intel is in the process of establishing three 45nm production facilities in Oregon, Arizona and Israel, investing a total of US$9 billion. The Oregon facility alone, scheduled to be operational by the second half of 2007, consists of 212,000 square feet of production space, Otellini added.

The Intel chief executive also announced details of its newest quad-core processors for PCs and high-volume servers. Dubbed Intel Core 2 Extreme Quad-Core processor, it targets game developers and is expected to ship in November. It features a 70 percent improvement in performance over its predecessor Intel Core2 Extreme, said Otellini.

Quad-core computing allows game developers to deliver a dynamic and versatile environment for the player, said Markus Maki, founder and chairman of gaming software development firm Remedy.

Maki demonstrated a new game his company has developed using Intel's new quad-core processors. The game, which involves physics simulation, would have been impossible to create using a single-core processor, he said.

Mainstream quad-core processor, to be called Intel Core 2 Quad Processor, is expected to ship by first quarter of 2007, along with the new low-power 50-watt Quad-Core Intel Xeon processor L5310 for blade servers. The Quad-Core Intel Xeon processor 5300 series brand for dual processor servers will be shipped this year.

Quad-core processing is expected to significantly improve efficiency in the enterprise data centers, which are increasingly demanding greater computing performance with less energy consumption, said Otellini.

One IT vendor agreed. "Customers in the data center care about less power consumption in a smaller footprint," said Tom Barton, CEO of Rackable Systems, an x86 server and storage vendor based in Milpitas, Calif.

Rackable Systems is involved in a number of large-scale data center deployments and counts for its customers Yahoo, Amazon and Microsoft. Barton said he expects the sale of Intel-based servers to grow by "a factor of five" and a big reason for that is the improvement in energy efficiency on Intel products.

A 22-unit server rack, for instance, can make up 320 processing cores using Intel's Quad-core processors and it only takes up less than four square feet of data center space, said Barton.

The Quad-Core processor follows months after Intel launched its Core Duo microprocessor brand last July. Over a six-month period since its launch, Intel has shipped over five million core duo chips to the market, said Otellini.

For the first time at IDF, an Apple executive spoke at the event to give attendees an update on the company's recent transition of its entire Mac product line over to Intel-based microprocessors. In February, Apple shipped its first notebook with Intel Core Duo called Mac Book Pro.

A month later, Mac Mini was also outfitted with the Core Duo processor. The Workstation Mac Pro desktop was also launched with Intel Xeon dual core chips, making it the faster Mac product ever made, said Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice-president of worldwide product marketing.

This year, Apple's market share in the notebook space increased from six percent in January to 12 percent in the summer and a significant reason for that is the new Intel-based Mac notebooks, said Schiller.

"Performance per watt really mattered to deliver a good product," said Schiller. "With this transition (to Intel microprocessors) is just the beginning of what Apple and Intel can do to together to bring to the market the best products."

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mari-Len De Guzman

Computerworld
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?