SAN FRANCISCO: CHIPMAKER Intel launched two Atom Z3000 series system on chip (SoC) processors at IDF today, which are aimed at doubling the performance of Android and upcoming Windows 8.1 tablets.
Intel's previous lineup of Clover Trail+ Atom mobile chips was announced in February in a batch of three dual-core chips sporting clock speeds of up to 2GHz, with hyperthreading allowing four threads to run concurrently.
Intel's latest 22nm Atom update codenamed Bay Trail includes Z3600 and Z3700 series chips and aims to improve tablet performance by up to two times over Intel's last Clover Trail Atom chips.
"What the new Atom delivers is the next level of fast and fluid in visual performance, quadcore, two times the compute performance over last year's Clovertrail platform," said Intel GM of application processors for the mobile and communications group Chris Walker.
"It integrates Intel HD graphics, a similar graphics engine in our Ivy Bridge line of processors, focused on visuals and richer 3D for tablets and two-in-ones."
Walker said that the updated Atom chips will also help support users' "deeper, longer sessions with richer media content" on tablets.
"The interaction of email and social networking is deeper and longer and the productivity you want to get done on a tablet, there's higher levels of content creation," Walker added.
"Where our technical team is focused to design are the differentiators of what makes a great tablet, the expectations of things like great all day battery life but increasing the use of different sensors supporting very high quality screens, and in the end-users mind, the overall SOC performance."
Supporting the Windows and Android operating systems, the Atom Z3700 series chips are powered by four cores up to a clock speed of 2.4GHz, with 2MB L2 cache and HD graphics. Depending on the configurations chosen, the chips offer dual or single channel DDR3 memory, supporting memory capacity up to 4GB.
The Atom Z3600 series chips are the less powerful of the two and most probably aimed more at smartphone devices. Supporting only Google's Android mobile operating system, the Atom Z3600 series chips offer dual core process technology, 1MB L2 cache, HD graphics and, depending on the configuration, supporting up to 2GB memory capacity.
Both Bay Trail Atom processor series support Intel's new Silvermont Core microarchitecture, which offers a wider dynamic operating range for better power efficiency. They will also support up to 2560x1600 display resolution.
Intel hasn't revealed when Bay Trail chips will reach OEM devices, but we suspect they will be on shop shelves in time for Christmas. µ