'Napa' faster, more popular than 'Sonoma' - Intel

'Centrino 3' better at getting dates too, apparently

Intel's next-generation Centrino platform, codenamed 'Napa', not only consumes rather less power than its predecessor does, but is faster and has garnered a greater degree of industry support, the chip giant claimed this week.

According to Keith Kressin, a marketing director within Intel's Mobility Group, Napa will form the basis for at least 230 systems, more than the previous generation of the platform, 'Sonoma'.

Why? A greater interest in mobile products, for one, but also because Napa consumes 28 per cent less power than today's top-of-the-range Sonoma-based notebooks, Kressin claimed. That's a result of the use of a 65nm process to make the CPU, 'Yonah', but it also arises from the tweaks made to the chip's sleep modes and its cache infrastructure.

The dual-core Yonah will also deliver a 30-100 per cent performance boost over 90nm, single-core 'Dothan' Pentium M chips, Kressin said.

"Napa offers substantially improved performance at the same time that we have this better battery life," he told reporters.

Napa is due to debut early next year - possibly as soon as 6 January, if claims made by industry sources prove correct. ®

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