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Intel focuses on wireless

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Wireless will be all, or almost, for the next laptops in the PC world.

The confirmation that the universe that is based on Windows will increasingly go in the direction of "wireless" is having these days at the world developer conference for Intel.

The Santa Clara company, which controls around 90% of the laptop market, announcing yesterday the specifications of Banias, the new processor still under development for laptops, has made it known that the chip will be aimed precisely at supporting wireless connectivity. .

In Banias, for example, Intel will directly integrate support for WiFi 802.11b and 802.11 a, the two most popular wireless connectivity standards.

The integration of WiFi, also used by Apple for Airport, directly at the processor level will allow for economic savings but will also allow for a reduction in consumption and the size of laptops.

Intel's move must also be understood as a market strategy, notes some observers, aimed at revitalizing the Communications Group, which is responsible for producing communications chips, which today appears to be in difficulty. Intel will only certify its 802.11 a and 802.11 b chips for use with Banias, making them the standard in the world of laptops.

Intel expects 50% of laptops to be able to establish wireless connections within the next year and that 80% of laptops with Banias will be compatible with both 802.11 a and 802.11 b.

Intel, also in the wireless field, also announced that it has entered into an agreement with Sony, Microsoft and other manufacturers, to establish a standard for the so-called Extended Wireless PC, a desktop that should connect to the network and wirelessly with all household devices, TV, Stereo and DVD players. The first PCs with this type of connectivity will arrive by the end of the year.

Finally Intel has also announced that the next versions of its handheld processors, the Xscale, will integrate multimedia extensions derived from the well-known MMX. The new system, called Wireless MMX, will serve to increase chip performance in decoding audio, video and in the 2D and 3D acceleration sector. Decoding performance, in particular, should improve by 40 to 60% making the devices particularly suitable for use in wireless streaming.