Intel demonstrated the future speed of its Pentium 4 mobile chip on Wednesday, Aug. 29, at the Intel Developers Forum in San Jose. The mobile Pentium 4 will run at 1.5 gigahertz when introduced in the first half of next year, and 2 GHz before the end of the year.
The 2-GHz version will run video smoothly, while conserving power, said Don MacDonald, director of marketing of Intels Mobile Platforms Group. Intel just unveiled a desktop version of the Pentium 4 running at 2 GHz.
Company officials told developers gathered for the Intel Developer Forum in San Jose on Wednesday that Intel will aggressively launch chips into the mobile and laptop market, providing both high speeds and power management features that are "second to none," MacDonald.
MacDonald said Intel was concentrating on both high performance and conserving power by letting the processor alternate between high-speed work, a temporary sleep state and then back to high-speed work. "Hurry up and idle," was the way he summed up the technique. Most laptops have a less finely graded means of going into a sleep state after a predetermined period of inactivity.
MacDonald indicated the chip would nap, when possible, every few nanoseconds, as other activities took place to move data or access peripherals. "Only the part of the chip needed for instructions is getting power," he noted at one point.
Intel will offer a power-conserving, mobile version of the Pentium III in the fourth quarter of this year, followed by a low-power Pentium 4 chip in the first half of 2002, and a Banias low- and ultra-low-power mobile processor in the first half of 2003.
The mobile Pentium 4 will operate at speeds of 1.5 GHZ when its introduced, and will achieve speeds of 2 GHz by the end of next year, said Frank Spindler, vice president of Intels Mobile Platforms Group.
The mobile Pentium 4 will make use of state of the art 0.13-micron circuits, which power current high-speed Pentium III processors running up to 1.13 GHz. Desktop Pentium 4 chips are being produced at 0.18 microns running, at 1.9 GHz and 2 GHz.
The Pentium 4 will include Intels SpeedStep approach to conserving power. When a laptop is unplugged and starts working on its battery, SpeedStep slows down the processor, using less electricity.
Due out in the first half of 2003, Banias will have built-in networking capabilities with its core chip set that allow it to search for wireless Bluetooth personal area network connections as its user moves around. Once it is beyond Bluetooths 30-meter limit, it will automatically switch to seeking a wireless 802.11 Ethernet connection. And once its beyond the 300-foot range of 802.11 wireless, it will seek a cell phone connection, allowing the holder of the mobile, Banias-based device to always be seamlessly connected to the Internet, MacDonald said.