Intel launches high-speed chip for home moviemakers

WHILE the giants of the electronics world were still setting up their stalls for the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, it was Intel which made the first game-changing announcement.

The firm yesterday unveiled a chip it says is the most exciting product in the company’s history.

Its Second Generation Intel Core, which features an inbuilt graphics chip, can outperform the fastest microprocessor in the world by a staggering 60 per cent and will run basic tasks more than 800 times faster than most current chips.

Intel expects the new processor to contribute more than a third of its revenue next year and generate $125bn (£81bn) for the PC industry.

Intel chief executive Paul Otellini said the new chip represents “the best ever integration between Microsoft and Intel”.

It says the chip will provide the power needed for next-generation functions including wirelessly streaming HD content and playing revolutionary new games, as well as allowing users to rapidly edit and play the ever increasing amount of home-generated video content.

The chip could also overhaul the way we interact with computers, with Intel’s head of consumer Mooly Eden demonstrating a new programme powered by the chip that allows users to control their PC by instructing an on-screen “avatar” which can read facial expressions and gestures.

Mooly also said his firm is making inroads into the lucrative smartphone and tablet markets – which Intel has been slow to join – but said the PC will not be usurped.
He said: “At the moment the tablet is like a new baby and everyone is fussing over it and wants to hold it and change its diaper. But it isn’t going to take over the world.”

Mooly added: “Tablets are here to stay but in a couple of years they will be seen as complimentary devices to netbooks. People don’t want a Swiss army knife that does everything. They want a device that will fit their needs at a specific time.” Intel says it has worked closely with Microsoft in the lead-up to the launch but would not confirm rumours it is also in talks with Apple about incorporating its processors into its devices.

City A.M. will be covering the latest from the show over the next few days