Intel Taking on Apple with New Microprocessor

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Posted 5 years ago

Clover Trail is taking over the world! No, it’s not the sequel to J.J. Abrams science fiction monster flick from 2008; this is Intel’s latest CPU that is looking to topple Apple from its dominant position at the top of the tablet market.

In San Francisco yesterday (9/27/2012), a host of major tablet manufacturers introduced new tablets, all with two things in common: Windows 8 and Intel Corp.’s new processor. Code named “Clover Trail,” the new CPU is called the Atom Z2760 and features dual-core processing that allows tablets to run faster and more efficiently so that battery life can last up to 10 hours on a device.

Traditionally, Intel’s PC chips are power hungry making them unsuitable for tablets, which are expected to be able to go long periods on one charge; this has often held them back in the tablet market. However, with sales of PC’s steadily falling as smartphones and tablets dominate; a more committed approach to the mobile market was a must for Intel.

The Windows 8 tablets will be a step up from the Microsoft Surface models which will run Windows RT, an OS that does not run all of the old Windows software – so often relied upon by businesses. With the business market firmly on the agenda, these new Intel tablets will be looking to muscle in on iPad territory.

“It brings over what you already have…millions of desktop applications,” said Chris Walker, general manager of Intel’s application processors when talking about the appeal of Windows 8 in an interview with CNET, “I can access my back-end ERP [enterprise resource planning] system, updating it in real time, pulling down all of the corporate information I need and managing like I do on a notebook,” he went on, hinting at the benefits to corporate customers.

Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Lenovo, and Samsung are amongst the manufacturers that have built tablets using the new Intel chip and it is unlikely that any of these devices will be priced much lower than the current price of the iPad, which puts Apple and their vast range of tablet-based apps at a distinct advantage. However, with Office in its ranks and a processor that runs up to 1.8GHz, Windows and Intel have major selling points of their own.

The first Windows 8 tablets will be released after October 26 when the new OS is rolled out.

– Anthony Carter

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