But everyone would agree that Intel has missed the boat for the mobile and tablet segment. So, instead of chasing behind the boat Intel should come up with something more than just power efficient chips.
Seems like folks are missing another important distinction, at least in the short run, between true mobile products (smartphones and tablets) vs. the PC ilk (laptops, netbooks and desktops). There are two key elements to drastically reducing energy needs to reach the battery life goals for mobile
- a power-sipping app processor - where today ARM still has a dramatic lead on both the dynamic and static/leakage side.
- a power sipping memory system, which today means a small (500M-1GB note 32bit addressing is sufficient) SRAM system with small energy costs for each memory transaction (apps processor and memory packaged together).
The upshot is that this also requires a specialized OS with power awareness, plus an extremely small footprint compared to PC land. So if Intel wants to make real headway in mobile in the short term, they have to succeed in a very different landscape, than PCland. A PC that uses "less power", is structurally handicapped by a 5x factor in terms of energy and battery life vs a comparable "small memory" mobile system. They have to stop producing "scaled down" hammers (Atoms) and move to making screwdrivers.
And for all the folks who call for PC "backward compatibility" in the mobile space, please realize that that is the root of the power problem - a big memory system is anathema to a mobile device today, something even Microsoft has recognized for Windows 8.
In the same way that ARM's obsession with LACK of backwards compatibility is the problem? The two platforms are rapidly converging. ARM basically sucks for anything but basic functionality but sips power. This has been OK for relatively dumb phones, but as the demands in performance and capabilities are coming up, so does the power consumption. Intel is moving in the opposite direction. Sooner or later the two are at the same place, and keep their respective markets due to incumbency.
On a somewhat related note, can anyone explain why Intel wants to sell mobile chips that NOBODY makes money on? Protecting their market from below?
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