Feeds

Intel does fondleslabs with Atom 'Oak Trail'

But don't call them fondleslabs

The Power of One Infographic

Intel has announced that it is now shipping its latest low-power platform, formerly codenamed Oak Trail, aimed squarely at Chipzilla's latest market-defining neologism: "Companion Computing".

That would be what the rest of the known world calls "tablets".

Intel says that the platform, centered around its new Atom Z670 processor – which briefly appeared in error on Intel's website in late March – will form the basis of 35 "innovative tablet and hybrid designs" that will begin shipping in May from companies including Evolve III, Fujitsu Limited, Lenovo, Motion Computing, Razer, and Viliv.

If you're not familiar with some of those companies, don't feel bad – you're not alone.

Oak Trail was originally announced at Taiwan's Comuptex in June, and was demoed at last September's Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco.

Intel noted on Monday that the upcoming Oak Trail–based devices from the companies listed above will run "a variety of operating systems," and that the company's "unique 'operating system of choice' strategy" for Atom will support Google's Chrome and Android, Intel's MeeGo, and Microsoft Windows.

In addition to announcing shipment of Oak Trail and the 45-namometer Z670, Intel also announced that it would be giving a "sneak peak" [sic] of their next-gen 32nm mobile platform, "Cedar Trail", at Tuesday and Wednesday's Intel Developer Forum in Beijing.

"The new Intel Atom 'Oak Trail' platform, with 'Cedar Trail' to follow, are examples of our continued commitment to bring amazing personal and mobile experiences to netbook and tablet devices, delivering architectural enhancements for longer battery life and greater performance,” said Intel's netbook and tablet group honcho Doug Davis in Monday's annoucnement.

In keeping with their new marketing emphasis on "experience" over mere speeds 'n' feeds, Intel's Oak Trail announcement focused on the platform's "rich media experience", including 1080p video decode, improved browsing speeds, HDMI support, long battery life, and "premium home theater sound."

In the inevitable "we support it, Apple's iOS doesn't" dig, Intel also promised that Oak Trail will provide speedy performance when running Adobe Flash, enabling "rich content and Flash-based gaming."

Cedar Trail, Intel says, is currently being sampled to OEMs, with devices featuring it to appear in the second half of this year. In addition to support for Blu-ray 2.0 and improved graphics performance, Cedar Trail also promises lower-power performance and its concomitant longer battery life.

Late last year, Intel CEO Paul Otellini confidently predicted that the company would "win" in the tablet marketplace – but implied that the victory would not be a sudden one. "We take a longer-term view to the tablet opportunity," he told reporters and analysts on a conference call announcing Chipzilla's third-quarter financial performance."

Monday's announcement of the Oak Trail rollout, while welcome news to Intel fans, may not be "longer-term" enough to make significant inroads into a market now dominated by ARM variants. Although it's too soon to tell, those same fans may have more reason to hope that the soon-to-follow Cedar Trail might have the chops to move the Intel architecture into a critical mass of "Companion Computing" devices. ®

Build a Business Case: Developing Custom Apps

More from The Register

next story
UK's emergency data slurp: IT giants panicked over 'legal uncertainty'
PM says rushed-through DRIP law will 'plug holes' in existing legislation
Doctor Who season eight scripts leak online
BBC asks fans to EXTERMINATE copies before they materialise
Google went behind our backs and really HURT US, squeal upset porn kingpins
'As the pornographer here, the moral turpitude should be MINE'
Report: UK.gov wants to legislate on comms data BEFORE next election
Ministerial alarm sets in over EU court's data retention ruling
The final score: Gramophones 1 – Glassholes 0
My life according to a Google Arse
IBM's $3bn bet on next-gen computers: Carbon nanotubes, neuro chips
Big Blue exec tells El Reg what to keep an eye on
Google Ventures opens new fund in London
El Reg has a new neighbour. So. Who's for a game of knock, knock, Ginger?
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem
Building your ideal BladeSystem infrastructure solution begins with eight simple steps, outlined in this whitepaper.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Build a Business Case: Developing Custom Apps
In this whitepaper learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.