Intel has announced the latest additions to their ultrathin targeted Ultra-Low Voltage processor line. Variations of their popular i3, i5 and i7 processors all promises to increase power efficiency by 15 percent. Just like their desktop counterparts, these chips will feature Turbo Boost and Hyper-Threading technologies that will benefit multitasking and will allow even the 1.2GHz rated Core i5-540UM to boost a single core to 2GHz under the right conditions.
The chips also pack HD video decoding, but due to recent litigation between NVIDIA and Intel, non-Intel integrated video options are out of the question.
Many have suggested that this new lineup of processors would be a perfect fit for the MacBook Air, but this doesn’t look to be the case. Apple has been moving all of their notebooks away from integrated Intel video solutions, with the most recent being the white MacBook’s update to include an NVIDIA 320M. Intel’s IGP solutions simply are not powerful enough to accommodate for much outside of video decoding. This is a particular problem for Apple since they are trying to ensure OpenCL application acceleration across their line.
Sticking with Core 2 Duo ULV series chips not only makes sense for Apple and the MacBook Air, but any vendor who is looking to produce moderately powerful ultrathin offerings in the short term.
The new chips are due to hit notebooks as early as next month.