Intel will highlight next-gen Haswell processors at next week's IDF

Intel processor

(—Can Intel possibly reduce the energy consumption of its processors by 41 percent? Intel is working on it and the result will be Haswell, its next generation of processors, and the key topic of discussions at next week's Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco. Intel's strategic roadmap is a power-reduction roadmap, where Intel hopes to make a difference in the brand behind computers that are thinner, lighter and stay on longer without needing a recharge. The next-generation processor chips will be officially unveiled at the IDF and professionals will judge for themselves whether this means a new day in Intel's ability to compete against competitors in mobile devices and tablets.

Haswell represents a new onto the existing 22nm used in . Intel says this fourth iteration will have improved security. The biggest talking point, though, is lower .

With Haswell, Intel has dropped the of the chip to 10 watts, down from 17 watts used by Ivy Bridge. The Verge details what the talk is about in Haswell's "ten-watt TDP." Thermal design point (TDP) has to do with the amount of cooling needed to dissipate a chip's heat. Intel's Ivy Bridge processors have a 17W TDP.

With the lower energy consumption comes the benefit that ultrabooks and laptops will have a longer on a yet thinner form. In the consumer marketplace, this is a requisite if Intel wants to compete in a demanding user experience that already knows the pleasures of carrying lightweight tablets and app-loaded smartphones rather than back-straining laptops for basic tasks on the run. Haswell's promise could translate into lighter-weight ultrabooks with practically all-day better life. Reports say Haswell-powered devices will likely carry less obtrusive fans along with the thinner form factor compared to current ultrabooks.

Intel partners may see the first Haswell CPUs in Q4 of this year. Consumer products using Haswell-based CPUs will be available next year.

Inside Intel, the more noise about Haswell the more opportunity for Intel to drown out the disappointed sighs from investors over reduced revenue estimates. The cuts are attributed to poor economies in Europe, the United States and China, as well as to enfeebled demand for PCs against the growing popularity of mobile devices.

Intel supplies processors for more than 80 percent of the world's computers but has to be restive over the fact that competition has done better in porting their technologies over to smartphones and tablets. Those products are typically powered by chip designs licensed by ARM. A principal reason that competition has done better than Intel in the mobile market rests in energy-efficient processors.

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Sep 07, 2012
It's 4 cores... simply because Intel has no other 8 core chips on that bridge type

Sep 07, 2012
Right, the i7 Extreme, which has six cores, is 32nm rather than 22nm. They are focusing on reducing energy consumption with Haswell, rather than processing power, according to gossip in industry.

Sep 08, 2012
10 watts is still too high compared to ARM (they typically have <5 watts, sometimes even <3 watts)

Sep 08, 2012
10 watts is high, but ARM has significantly poorer performance.

10 watts however may not be for the quad core chip, and probably for clock speeds under 2 Ghz.

The energy content of a typical AAA NiCd battey should keep such a CPU alive for 1.5 minutes.

Sep 09, 2012

You just never get it right, do you Scott?

VD is truly a pox. And Oliver was a lot more fun.

Sep 09, 2012
"You just never get it right, do you Scott?" - Jonnyboy

A typical NiCd AAA battery holds about 1000 joules of energy which will be expended by a 10 watt device in 100 seconds, or roughly 1.5 minutes.

Feel free to show us your calculations JonnyBoy.

Sep 09, 2012
I'm going to be a bit naive here, but here's what I'm thinking:
Based on what I could find, an iPhone averages between 2 and 12 watts (total, not just the processor) when used "normally", whatever that means. With this much usage the battery lasts 24 to 30 hours. The battery is around 1,432 mAh @ 3.7 volts. The average AAA NiCd is 400 mAh @ 1.25 volts.

This suggests that a single AAA NiCd battery could run an iPhone for for about a bit less than 3 hours.

Without knowing the voltage of these chips, let's pretend that it's the same as an iPhone (probably less, given that the whole point of this new design was to create an ultra-low voltage chip). That would suggest that a NiCd AAA battery could run one of these chips for an hour or 2. A standard Lithium AAA battery would power one for several times that long.

Sep 09, 2012
Intel had better do something to save itself. With the market looking very bright for notepad computers and mobile devices of all kinds, the demand for Intel's core products for desktop and laptop computers is already falling proportional to the popularity of the new products. Maybe it should be designing super computers around their flagship processors. It saved IBM. On the other hand, it may have (read: probably) colluded with IBM to not make competing products. Bit of a sticky wicket, that.

Sep 10, 2012
When in use... Yes.

However, phones are generally idle, and when idle the Iphone series typically draws around 0.7 watts.

So, with an energy content of a typical 200 mah NICD AAA battery, the kind used in portable phones, the ARM CPU can be kept in a idle state for around 25 minutes.

Typically LiOn AAA's have 5 or 6 times the energy capacity.

"Based on what I could find, an iPhone averages between 2 and 12 watts (total, not just the processor) when used "normally"" - Gopher

Sep 10, 2012
Intel is still in a very good position, and their intention is to get Atom down to the 2 watt range.

One of the problems for ATOM though is it's x86 instruction set, which hasn't been suitable for efficient computing for the last couple of decades.

Intel keeps it around because without it they would lose control over most of the CPU market.

Intel should simply purchase ARM with some of it's pocket lint, and switch to a new, and more modern/efficient ARM like instruction set that is suitable for modern computing.

"Intel had better do something to save itself." - Baud

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