Intel teases new smartphone processor at Computex, sets release for early next year

4 Jun 2013

Intel’s next Atom processor, codenamed Merrifield, was showcased in an early-stage smartphone at the Computex computer expo in Taipei, Taiwan.

This was the first demo of the 20nm SoC, which features a quad-core CPU. Tom Kilroy, Intel’s vice-president of product marketing, claimed the chip will provided 300pc better graphics performance, enabling support for high-resolution displays, as well as improved battery life compared to its predecessors. Overall, the Merrifield chip is said to offer 50pc better performance, PCWorld reports.

Merrifield, which has been designed for use in high-performance smartphones, will start shipping to manufacturers early next year with more reveals coming at 2014’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Other processors on show at Computex were new Atom chips code-named Bay Trail, which will start shipping in Android and Windows 8 tablets later this year. A key development highlighted Tuesday is that these Bay Trail tablets come with LTE connectivity, which was incompatible with previous Intel mobile processors.

Both Merrifield and Bay Trail are based on Silvermont architecture, which is said to use 4.7 times less power.

Intel faces an uphill struggle to overtake ARM-based processors in the mobile device market, but the chip-maker has been making progress. Recently, it was rumoured that Samsung would switch from ARM to Intel in its next 10-inch Galaxy tablet.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.