Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Intel on Track with Processors Featuring Graphics Core in 2009

Despite some over-conservative expectations and reports, Intel Corp. is on track to release its central processing units (CPUs) with integrated graphics cores this year, the company said during its most recent conference call with financial analysts.

Answering the question from Hans Mosesmann – an analyst from Raymond James, a financial services holding company – Stacy Smith, chief financial officer of Intel, said that the code-named Havendale processor with integrated graphics core for desktop and mobile computers will be available “in the second half” of this year.

Intel’s Havendale processor is a multi-chip module (MCM) in LGA1160 form-factor containing Nehalem micro-architecture-based dual-core CPU in addition to graphics and memory controller hub (GMCH) that features dual-channel DDR3 memory controller, PCI Express 2.0 x16 interface to connect add-on graphics cards as well as integrated graphics core. It is projected that both chips on the MCM are made using 45nm process technology.

Since Havendale CPU line has memory controller as well as PCI Express interconnection inside, there will be no need for GMCH (or North Bridge) on the mainboard. Instead, the new processors will connect directly to code-named Ibexpeak platform controller hub (PCH) that will carry hard drive controller, wired and wireless network controllers, monitor physical interfaces, PCI controller and other input/output as well as platform-related capabilities.

Earlier some web-sites reported that Intel’s processors featuring integrated graphics cores will only be out in 2010. Still, even despite the fact that Mr. Smith said that the chips will ship for revenue in 2009, it remains to be seen, whether products on their base will emerge this year.

“You can expect volume production of Nehalem into mainstream price points for desktops and notebooks in the second half of this year,” said Paul Otellini, chief executive of Intel.

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