Intel Adds Napa To Centrino Road Map

Intel will follow up the upcoming Sonoma wireless platform with "Napa," executives said at IDF.

SAN FRANCISCO—Intel will move forward on its Centrino wireless solution with "Napa," executives said Wednesday.

The company also demonstrated its first desktop dual-core chip running on an Intel 915 motherboard at the Intel Developer Forum here.

Although desktop processors have been the focus of past IDF confabs, the focus here Wednesday turned to mobility, with enhancements to Intels mobility strategy the focus of the mornings keynotes. Intels Centrino platform is currently based on the Dothan processor, the first component of the "Sonoma" platform due next year. The Centrino bundle includes a processor, chip set, and Wi-Fi component.

Sonoma is scheduled to ship during the first quarter of 2005, when Intels 802.11a/b/g Wi-Fi components will be integrated into the platform. About 125 notebooks designs based on Sonoma are already under way, Anand Chandrasekher, vice president of the Mobile Platforms Group at Intel, told an audience at IDF.

The platform will include VPN roaming, thanks to an alliance between Checkpoint, Cisco and Nortel. Scandinavian ISP TeliaSonera and others will also permit roaming between Wi-Fi and cellular networks, a technology Intel has promised would be included in the future.

After Sonoma will come Napa, which will use three next-generation parts: "Yonah," the companys first dual-core mobile processor; "Calistoga," the associated chip set; and "Golan," the wireless component. Intel executives did not disclose the capabilities of Golan, but it is suspected that the chip set will include WiMax capabilities. Intel executives have said previously that WiMax capabilities will begin shipping in notebooks in 2006.

Yonah will also include Intels Vanderpool partitioning and LaGrande security technology, Chandrasekher said. The system will be smart enough to turn off the second core or even all but part of a single core to conserve power, he said.


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