CHIPMAKER Intel has unveiled several devices including desktop PCs powered by updated chips with Iris Pro graphics, despite the slowing PC market.
The new form factors coming this year include mini PCs and portable all-in-one systems, which will feature Ready Mode Technology that allows a PC to stay connected even when it's in a power-saving state.
The new class of device is a PC built into a 20in touchscreen with a battery and the ability to slot into a docking station.
Despite the decline of the traditional desktop PC system compared with laptops and other devices, Intel hopes its new line will revive the struggling PC market by adding capabilities designed to appeal to both businesses and consumers alike.
"The desktop business is a large and important segment for Intel, and we are investing in it - reinventing form factors, experiences and products for our customers," said Intel VP and GM of its Desktop Client Platform Group, Lisa Graff.
As well as small form factor PCs such as Intel's NUC (Next Unit of Computing), the chipmaker showcased an all-in-one reference design called Black Brook, which features a touchscreen for Windows 8, display sizes up to 27in, and an internal battery so it can be used without being tethered to a wall socket.
Black Brook includes an integrated Intel Realsense 3D camera, a quad microphone array, premium audio and a full HD display.
Intel also detailed new fourth generation Core processors coming later this year, including a chip codenamed Devil's Canyon with an improved thermal interface and CPU packaging to allow for overclocking, and a Core i7 Extreme Edition supporting up to eight cores and 16 threads with DDR4 memory support.
Intel also said that it will have desktop versions of its upcoming fifth generation Core chips codenamed Broadwell, which will bring its Iris Pro graphics to the desktop for the first time to deliver a boost in graphics performance.
Ready Mode Technology, which will be available on select OEM systems in 2014, is described as a capability that takes advantage of power-saving states in Intel's fourth generation Core chips to enable PCs to remain ready and always connected even when in a power-saving state. It might be used to ensure that a PC is always ready to stream media to other devices in the home, for example, according to the firm.
In December, analyst outfit IDC said PC sales declined worse than had been expected in 2013, as smartphones and tablets continued to dominate the consumer technology market.
"Worldwide PC shipments fell by -10.1 percent last year," IDC said, slightly more than the previous projection of -9.7 percent, making it "by far the most severe yearly contraction on record". µ
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