Intel believes its process technology could eventually give it the lead in low power processing.
It’s not just the technology Intel strives to better with every generation, but also its human taskforce.
“[The engineers] had better be better these days, way better than when I was an engineer,” said Permutter, adding that today’s engineers came at things “with a different mindset.” This, he said, meant the new generation was used to products with much broader market capabilities. “In some ways that helps a lot, in other ways it makes it harder,” he said.
Despite the seeming solidity of Intel’s roadmap, however, Perlmutter is well aware that the road ahead may not be entirely bump free.
“I always worry. I was worried when we moved to 1 micron. I was worried when we went below 100. I’m worried about going below 10. But my colleagues running the technology side tell me they are worried, too, and the moment they are worried, I’m no longer worried, because they do their job,” he said.
Having said that, ARM and its partners might do well to worry a bit more about Intel’s progress, with the firm’s 14-nm node already in “extremely advanced stages of design.”
Perlmutter said his firm is holding firm to its schedule of putting its first products on 14 nm in production later next year .
“We will launch many products on 14nm. Our plans are advancing and we believe that we will grow the gap and it will give us more advantage,” said Perlmutter.
“Experience is enabled by performance. The better performance you have the better you are. It’s all about performance,” he said, adding “high performance computing in a small form factor.”