Intel low-voltage chips range for ultra-thin laptops now official

May 25, 2010, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Intel has announced a range of low-voltage chips for ultra-thin laptops. The new 32nm chips announced are the Core i3-330UM (dual-core,1.2 GHz), Core i5-430UM(dual-core, 1.2 GHz), Core i5-540UM(dual-core, 1.2 GHz), Core i7-660UM (dual core, 1.33 GHz), Celeron U3400 (dual-core, 1.06 GHz) and Pentium U5400 (dual core, 1.2 GHz).

The chips have been created using high-k metal gate process technology. Their sizes are 32 times smaller than conventional processors and offer 35 to 40 percent better performance than the chips that are currently being used in ultrathin laptops.

Turbo Boost technique developed by Intel is part of the new chips as well. This allows the adjustment of the chip’s performance to its workload. The power needed for the operation of the new chips is also 15 percent lesser than the power needed in standard chips. Dual threading support and support for HD video is also included in the new chips.

The chips are ideal for use in ultrathin laptops which require longer battery life, light components and superior performance. The new chips will allow laptop sizes to be reduced to thicknesses lesser than an inch. They can also be integrated in laptops with screen sizes ranging from 7-inch to 15-inch.

Intel’s new range of chips have been created to compete against rival Advanced Micro Devices’ (AMD) Athlon Neo chips. Laptop manufacturers such as Asus, Acer, MSI and Lenovo have already begun developing devices embedded with the new chips and will launch these devices in June.

Overall notebook PC sales have been projected to rise by 25.5 percent this year. Ultra low-voltage notebooks have also been identified as a swiftly growing market with a growth rate of 93 percent in 2010, according to market research firm iSuppli.

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