Intel is apparently convinced that the future of computing is mobile. Having announced its new Atom Silvermont architecture last month, the chipmaker has introduced its 4th-generation Intel Core processors (code named Haswell), with much of the focus on the power savings that will benefit the battery life of mobile devices. Designed with a new generation of Ultrabooks in mind, Intel says its new processors will provide up to nine hours of battery life with up to two times the graphics capability of previous generations.
The new processors are aimed at the so-called Ultrabook “2-in-1” devices that can switch between tablet and clamshell form factors with a flip and swivel of the display or by severing of the keyboard from the display. At Computex Taipei 2013, Intel Executive Vice President Tom Kilroy said Intel has more than 50 different 2-in1 designs in the works at a range of price points. These will range from Silvermont-powered devices up to premium Intel Core processor-powered units.
"Today we deliver on the vision set forth two years ago to reinvent the laptop with the introduction of our 4th generation Intel Core processors that were designed from the ground up for the Ultrabook and serve as the foundation for a new era of 2-in-1 computing," said Kilroy. "We made one of the most seismic changes to our roadmap ever to build these new Core processors that deliver the stunning performance of the PC and the mobility of a tablet in one device. The new processors power the most exciting 2-in-1 designs to-date."
Based on Intel’s 22 nm Haswell architecture, Intel claims the 4th-gen Intel Core processors deliver a 50 percent increase in battery life over the previous generation for tasks such as surfing the internet or watching movies, and promise power levels as low as 6 watts. The new processors also pack integrated graphics that the company says offer up to twice the performance of their predecessors. Some chips in the range will include Intel Iris graphics, which offers twice the 3D performance of processors with Intel HD Graphics.
Quad-core versions of the 4th-gen Intel Core processors are available now, starting at US$192 for the Core i5-4750, through $242 for the Core i5-4670K, up to $399 for the Core i7-4770K. Additional versions to be added to the line in the coming months.