Early adoption of wireless broadband services coupled with new energy-efficient and higher-performing developments in mobile devices are signaling the beginning of "mobility ubiquity" according to Intel's top executive responsible for mobile computing. This mobile ubiquity offers the industry substantial new growth opportunities.
"The number of voice lines worldwide skyrocketed with the proliferation of cellular phones, which made the phone truly personal," said Sean Maloney, Intel executive vice president and general manager of the Intel Mobility Group. "At the same time, the Internet has unleashed an insatiable demand for computing power. Now, if we can deliver ubiquitous broadband based on open standards and drive performance and power innovation on computing and phone platforms, mobile computing has the potential for continued dramatic growth."
Notebooks are increasingly the device of choice for both businesses and consumers as users realize the many advantages laptop PCs offer. Maloney unveiled several new capabilities planned for the company's next-generation mobile platform, codenamed Napa, designed to lower power consumption yet improve graphics and wireless capabilities. Intel has already garnered 220 Napa design wins to date.
Intel announced an agreement with Matsushita Battery Industrial (MBI) to jointly develop more powerful battery technology to support the vision for "all-day computing" for future Intel Centrino mobile technology-based platforms.
As an example of the affect mobility can have in and out of the digital home, Intel is working with Crown Castle and DiBcom to demonstrate mobile broadcast TV functionality on Intel Centrino mobile technology and Intel XScale technology. In a series of commercial user trials in 2005 and 2006, the companies will work to develop better end-user experiences of standardized TV broadcast hardware and services across Intel platforms.
As evidence of Intel's continued innovation in mobile, the company today described its forthcoming multi-core mobile processor, codenamed Merom, due to arrive in the second half of 2006. Over the coming years, Merom's energy-efficient, multi-core design will deliver three times the performance per watt, a metric Intel has said is a key requirement for the future.
In addition to voice services, a large and growing segment of the mobile phone market is now offering full-featured operating services, enterprise applications and multi-media services. These capabilities are critically dependent on the "brains" inside the device. To provide these capabilities Maloney disclosed plans for Intel's 2006 cellular platform components for next-generation wireless handsets.
These components include Intel's next generation of Intel XScale application processors, codenamed Monahans. This product family will offer a wide range of performance, power and integration levels to meet the needs of handsets, smartphones, handhelds and consumer electronic devices. Monahans is expected to provide five times more performance within the next few years, while consuming less energy than previous Intel-based platforms. Maloney also introduced the next generation of Intel graphics co-processors, codenamed Stanwood. He also noted the importance of standards for furthering innovation in mobility.
"Global innovation around open wireless standards is driving dramatic increases in the adoption of wireless technologies," Maloney said. "Cities across America and around the world are actively installing Wi-Fi networks to support e-government, enable connected mobile worker and bring the benefits of wireless broadband to more and more citizens."
WiMAX builds on the WiFi experience, offering greater connectivity opportunities as WiMAX standard products enter the market. Cities and regions around the globe are planning for and deploying WiMAX networks, and Maloney discussed its cost-effectiveness and reach as potentially helping to bridge the digital divide and bring more communities around the world online.
Intel is involved in several trial deployments around the world to test the feasibility of WiMAX. Each of these trial deployments has shown how the promise of standards-based wireless broadband can impact the way that businesses and governments work, commerce is conducted and students learn.