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Intel's Rosepoint Puts Wi-Fi Radio, Atom CPU on Single Chip

By - Source: Wired | B 18 comments

A dual-core Atom CPU and a digital Wi-Fi radio on the same chip.

Once the king of the netbook market with its Atom chipset, Intel now faces stiff competition from the likes of Nvidia and AMD. However, a current research project at Intel shows that Intel hasn't lost its edge just yet. Dubbed Rosepoint, Wired reports that, after years of hard work, Intel engineers have managed to squeeze a digital 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi radio and a low-power Atom CPU onto the same chip.

Though it sounds simple enough, sticking these two components onto the same chip is no easy feat. Wired's Robert McMillan explains that Intel's researchers not only had to figure out a way to take a complex analogue WiFi chip (with its complicated design and customized circuits operating on a continuum of voltages) and boil it down to the tiny scale required, the company also needed to figure out a way to eliminate radio wave emissions that can cause interference between the two components.

The resulting chip allows not only for fewer chips (which means a lower cost) but also heightened power efficiency. Though Rosepoint is only in the research stages right now, it could show up in laptops and phones by 2015. As if all of this weren't bad-ass enough, Intel is also looking at ways to radio antennas on-chip, too. It might be a while before we hear more details, but it sure is nice to hear what's going on behind closed doors over in Santa Clara, isn't it?

Head on over to Wired for the full details on how Intel has gotten a digital WiFi radio and an Atom CPU to play house.

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Top Comments
  • 22 Hide
    guru_urug , February 22, 2012 2:13 PM
    It would be amazing if they manage to use the heatsink as a antenna :) 
Other Comments
  • 22 Hide
    guru_urug , February 22, 2012 2:13 PM
    It would be amazing if they manage to use the heatsink as a antenna :) 
  • 8 Hide
    CaedenV , February 22, 2012 2:17 PM
    for some reason it took me a minute to realize that by wifi radio it simply meant wifi instead of a wifi radio station like I heart radio or something.... where's that coffee...

    Anywho, very cool tech! One would think they would have a much easier time putting it on a northbridge instead of the CPU as there should be less interference, but maybe they will have a whole SOC for atom before long, and really be able to compete with the ARM chips on the market for cell phones and such. My contract is up in 2 years... so they better have something good and affordable by then :) 
  • Display all 18 comments.
  • -3 Hide
    garciam , February 22, 2012 3:15 PM
    I'd rather have more speed and the wireless external. more flexibility...

  • 0 Hide
    g4114rd0 , February 22, 2012 4:29 PM

    Intel Santa Clara projects.

    Snapdragon move to all-in-one chip...
  • 5 Hide
    memadmax , February 22, 2012 5:01 PM
    Nice, and about time too =D

    guru_urugIt would be amazing if they manage to use the heatsink as a antenna

    Thats a hell of an Idea, put a patent on it and sue the crap out of intel =D j/k
  • 0 Hide
    nforce4max , February 22, 2012 5:02 PM
    Looks like Intel may be getting the edge of amd in the low power arena.
  • 4 Hide
    ivyanev , February 22, 2012 5:10 PM
    Good job and good luck selling these in 2015.
  • 0 Hide
    esrever , February 22, 2012 5:15 PM
    can't wait for the day they integrate everything into an atom.
  • -1 Hide
    blueeyesm , February 22, 2012 5:31 PM
    'Intel is also looking at ways to radio antennas on-chip, too. '

    Should be 'Intel is also looking at ways to put radio antennas on-chip, too. '
  • 0 Hide
    frombehind , February 22, 2012 6:34 PM
    what will lintel come up with next? wireless electricity? ^^
  • 4 Hide
    CaedenV , February 22, 2012 8:18 PM
    frombehindwhat will lintel come up with next? wireless electricity? ^^

    Actually they have already been working on this for some 15 years now
  • 3 Hide
    A Bad Day , February 22, 2012 8:46 PM
    Eventually, we'll have an entire computer on a chip. I'd give it about 20 years.

    And Bigfoot's Killer Network cards would continue to sell strong...
  • 0 Hide
    loomis86 , February 22, 2012 10:06 PM
    If they can put a wi-fi transceiver on a CPU, then they can put any transceiver on a CPU, I would think. How about a TV tuner, AM/FM receiver, weather band, and SW receiver, all crammed onto a CPU? I don't see why it would be difficult to open up the spectrum a little. If they can do it for the ISM band (wi-fi) then they should be able to do it for all radio communications. And why not add GPS to the CPU as well?
  • -2 Hide
    sonofliberty08 , February 22, 2012 10:34 PM
    like put lipstick on a pig, it still can't run angry bird smoothly, not even crisis......
  • 0 Hide
    shreeharsha , February 22, 2012 11:33 PM
    These chips may not have heatsink at all. might be used in phones
  • 0 Hide
    maunch372 , February 23, 2012 12:46 AM
    Dear Intel,

    If you feel threatened by competition, you could consider making faster Atoms.
  • 0 Hide
    __-_-_-__ , February 23, 2012 10:26 AM
    I don't like this. I like to pick my own wif chipsets and antennas.