Intel rolled out last week the first batch of low-power dual-core processors that are the centerpiece of its next-generation Napa mobile platform.
Models based on the technology were on display at the International Consumer Electonics Show in Las Vegas—from large-screen entertainment notebooks offered by top-tier OEMs to whitebooks boasting features tailored for system builders.
Dubbed Core Duos, Intel, Santa Clara, Calif., promises the new processors, formerly code-named Yonah, will deliver more computing might but still will operate at a reduced power consumption to ensure a reasonable amount of battery life in the devices that use them. “It is up to 68 percent faster and consumes 28 percent less power,” said Intel President and CEO Paul Otellini during his CES keynote. Intel is ramping up production of this CPU line quickly and will ship 1 million parts in three weeks, Otellini said.
The Napa platform also ushers in more options for system builders. One key initiative centers on Common Building Blocks (CBB) that seek to standardize key whitebook components, including displays, drives, batteries and adapters. At launch, Napa whitebooks will have four CBBs, including a standard screen format for ODMs intended to make sourcing screens for whitebooks from multiple vendors easier, said Eric Thompson, Intel’s North American marketing manager for the channel.
The push to standardize such components has been a hot button for system builders, which are seeking ways to reduce inventory and better service customers.
Todd Swank, director of marketing at system builder Nor-Tech, Burnsville, Minn., said having one standard battery or power supply for all of its whitebook models would save time and money when servicing customers. He hopes that future advances in CBBs will help system builders offer deeper customization.
ASUS, Taipei, Taiwan, and EliteGroup Computer Systems, Fremont, Calif., last week showed off models that can be completely configured from a removable backplate. Some whitebooks can be difficult to configure because they require the system builder to open several different areas of the chassis, system builders said.
ASUS said its current Z62F Napa model is the first whitebook it designed from the ground up for system builders.