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Intelís Silvermont Architecture Revealed: Getting Serious About Mobile
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Old 7th May 2013, 07:47   #1
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Default Intelís Silvermont Architecture Revealed: Getting Serious About Mobile

The most frustrating part about covering Intelís journey into mobile over the past five years is just how long itís taken to get here. The CPU cores used in Medfield, Clover Trail and Clover Trail+ are very similar to what Intel had with the first Atom in 2008. Obviously weíre dealing with higher levels of integration and tweaks for further power consumption, but the architecture and much of the core remains unchanged. Just consider what that means. A single Bonnell core, designed in 2004, released in 2008, is already faster than ARMís Cortex A9. Intel had this architecture for five years now and from the marketís perspective, did absolutely nothing with it. You could argue that the part wasnít really ready until Intel had its 32nm process, so perhaps weíve only wasted 3 years (Intel debuted its 32nm process in 2010). Itís beyond frustrating to think about just how competitive Intel would have been had it aggressively pursued this market.

Today Intel is in a different position. After acquisitions, new hires and some significant internal organizational changes, Intel seems to finally have the foundation to iterate and innovate in mobile. Although Bonnell (the first Atom core) was the beginning of Intelís journey into mobile, itís Silvermont - Intelís first new Atom microarchitecture since 2008 - that finally puts Intel on the right course.
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