Print 15 comment(s) - last by Phynaz.. on Mar 22 at 4:56 PM

Intel is developing a processor specifically for the UMPC platform

When developing a mobile computing platform, battery life is always a concern with device manufacturers. In the case of the Ultra-mobile PC (UMPC) platform, battery life has been a major issue since the devices typically use processors originally designed for notebook computers.

Currently, UMPCs using Intel-based notebook processors range from the lowly 900MHz Celeron M ULV processor (Asus R2H, Samsung Q1) to the 1.2GHz Core Solo U1400 processor (Sony VAIO UX). The problem though is that these processors provide the same performance as they would in a larger notebook, but are paired with a much smaller battery pack on UMPCs.

Intel is currently developing a mobile processor that is specifically aimed at the UMPC market to help ease the battery drain. The processor will be one of six new processors manufactured on Intel's 45 nanometer manufacturing process.

The relief, however, won't come immediately, according to Intel CEO Paul Otellini. "The new UltraMobile CPU is in addition to the first five. The first UltraMobile devices we'll see in the latter part of the year."

It is not known which OEM will be first to use the new processor, but the likely candidates include major players like Samsung, Sony, Asus, and TabletKiosk.

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The purse factor.
By VooDooAddict on 3/22/2007 10:27:10 AM , Rating: 5
I think everyone is missing one of the biggest obstacles to UMPC. The Cultural Hurdle. a.k.a. the Purse factor.

It's not really going to be much smaller for men to carry around. If you put this in a case smaller then a small brief case, something specifically for UMPC sized devices. It's going to look like a purse. The alternative is to get a larger laptop bag... well then you could carry a full "TabletPC" (for quite possibly less $$).

RE: The purse factor.
By VooDooAddict on 3/22/2007 10:30:43 AM , Rating: 1
I've seen other's comment on Car PCs.

I would agree that they should target the GPS market. Here you have people spending $400+ on a single use item. Giving people more functionality and larger screens for the higher price will probably appeal to many consumers / commuters / car based business travelers.

RE: The purse factor.
By Mitch101 on 3/22/2007 10:31:35 AM , Rating: 2
I agree the biggest issue with UMPC is the price tag. They need to be cheap.

RE: The purse factor.
By Phynaz on 3/22/2007 11:53:20 AM , Rating: 2
Hardly. People always pay a premium for small size.

RE: The purse factor.
By aos007 on 3/22/2007 1:42:58 PM , Rating: 2
They don't. That's why it hasn't been selling.

Just being small isn't enough - especially if you actually LOSE significant functionality (screen size, keyboard) because of the shrink. Just look at PDAs.

RE: The purse factor.
By Phynaz on 3/22/2007 4:56:24 PM , Rating: 2
And look at norebooks, Blackberrys, portable dvd players.

All of them cost more than their full size counterparts.

Maybe just being small isn't enough for you, but it's enough for a very large portion of the rest of the world.

Can I get one for my car already!
By Mitch101 on 3/22/2007 10:17:57 AM , Rating: 3
Lets merge the PC with Car DVD players already with the fold out screens.

If you can make a MacMini, Nintendo Wii, and that MacMini rip off we can certainly put PC's into cars now with plenty of power.

The Micro-ATX stuff coming from VIA is nice but personally doesnt pack just enough punch.

The head unit could be the main PC and where you would normally have a 6-cd changer(Not that anyone has those any more) would be a removable hard drive unit instead.

Cars could network together relaying traffic information. Really good VOIP in the car. Excellent Map controls with unlimited information. Not to mention media jukeboxes and audio collections.

I would want that much more than those lousy micro laptops with useless micro keyboards and screens.

RE: Can I get one for my car already!
By Triring on 3/22/2007 11:45:29 AM , Rating: 2
Not only DVD but should also be connected to GPS and car computer to log engine rev, car temp. and so on.
Be a great remote diagnostic device and possible black box(as in Flight recorder) for evidence in court when necessary.

RE: Can I get one for my car already!
By mino on 3/22/2007 12:50:07 PM , Rating: 4
no black box for me :)

spying through GPS toll systems is enough

By danrien on 3/22/2007 4:00:47 PM , Rating: 2
of course there's always the option of using the mini-ITX form factor to get a pc in your car.

By therealnickdanger on 3/22/2007 9:00:12 AM , Rating: 2
Perhaps this will allow manufacturers to produce UMPCs that we actually want to buy and can afford to buy. PADD, here we come...

RE: Rad
By therealnickdanger on 3/22/2007 9:02:27 AM , Rating: 2
Dang it, I also wanted to ask what power envelope we're talking about here. What Intel is planning with their quad-core CPUs is remarkable, so I wonder what the power draw will be from these ULV 45nm CPUs.

RE: Rad
By TSS on 3/22/2007 9:11:41 AM , Rating: 2
i wonder when the limits of architecture are reached, after all with so much current you can only power so much transistors.

their a long way from that still, seeing the efficientcy intel and AMD are pumping through, but still... there has to be a point that no matter what you change in the architecture the power will go up again...

Car PC
By SiN on 3/22/2007 10:17:37 AM , Rating: 2
I've been weighing the idea of building my own in car pc media hub for some time now. The idea that intel are making this specificly for umpcs could be something worth while maybe - if i ever get around to doing this. I'll have to keep my ears and eyes open for more developments.

I suspect that something like this could be used as an even smaller Media PC for the living room in the future with the energy consious of us in mind + if heat dissapation is good it'd be quiet too.
Using the Wii remote as a BT mouse device maybe? :D

Anyone had any experiance building an in car PC?

RE: Car PC
By Xenoterranos on 3/22/2007 10:53:19 AM , Rating: 3
I've built 2 off the VIA nano-itx form factor in custom 9" square x 2 in tall cases. Heating and power consumption where never the issue, it was storage space. No matter what kind I used, I never really trusted laptop harddrives, and at the time flash was too small/expensive. In a few years, I could see doing this with some flash HDD's and these kind of processors (The VIA chips, although great at decoding video, where NOT fast...think early Athlon)

"This is about the Internet.  Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
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