Intel’s future Pentium chip does Windows and Android
Atom is moving on up — to the Pentium and Celeron branding. And Intel is renaming the architecture too.
|Samsung Ativ Smart PC. More Android-based Intel laptops are coming, the chipmaker says.
Intel’s Atom is getting a makeover.
In more ways than one. First, when Intel speaks to customers internally about micro-architectures, Atom is out, Silvermont
is in, Intel told CNET on Friday.
Second, some upcoming Silvermont silicon will be branded Pentium and Celeron — which is the value end of Intel’s Core-based
The chipmaker’s reasoning is that some variants of Silvermont now
offer performance comparable to current mainstream Celeron and Pentium.
That’s quite different from the Atom of old, which had a reputation —
particularly in Netbooks — for being slow.
Higher performance varieties of Silvermont will also ship with PC-like attributes such as PCI
But here’s where it gets interesting. These chips will debut not just in Windows PCs but
Android systems too. Laptops, convertibles, detachables, all-in-ones (AIOs), and desktops — running either
Windows 8.1 or Android — should begin to ship later this year and early next year, Intel said.
Note that the variant of Silvermont aimed at pure
will probably not be branded as Pentium and Celeron. Again, the new
branding is expected to be mostly limited to laptops, hybrids, and AIOs.
Finally, as a quick refresher on how Silvermont gets the bump
in performance : it uses a higher-performance out-of-order design, just
like Intel’s mainstream Core processors, and integrates a fast Intel
graphics chip, also like its mainstream cousins.