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Intel Announces Atom Bay Trail Processor For Tablets

By - Source: Engadget | B 14 comments

Bay Trail Atom system-on-a-chip processors are quad-core.

Intel has announced new Bay Trail Atom processors for tablets, as well as the 'Lexington' processor for smartphones.

The new Bay Trail Atom system-on-a-chip processors are quad-core and are notably smaller than previous Atoms thanks to a new 22nm design. They boast better "all-day" battery life and greater processing power, which is apparently twice as fast as current Atoms. Quad-core Bay Trail Atoms is currently scheduled for a launch by holiday 2013.

For worldwide markets and budget phones, Intel announced the development of another Atom processor, the 'Lexington'. Intel also announced a smartphone for emerging markets that will sport the Lexington Atom Z2420 w/XMM 6265 chip. The chips are designed for markets including Africa, China, Latin America and Southeast Asia.

The chips boasts speeds of up to 1.2GHz with Hyper-Threading, HD video encoding and decoding (1080p 30fps), camera support with seven-frame burst mode, as well as SGX540 graphics. FM radio, microSD card slot and Intel Wireless Display for playback on TVs are also included.


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  • 3 Hide
    Cazalan , January 8, 2013 5:11 PM
    I was expecting more than 2x with twice the cores. They must have had to scale back the clocks to get that many cores in.
  • 8 Hide
    joytech22 , January 8, 2013 5:39 PM
    SGX540 Graphics..? Great. So they are using generations-old PowerVR technology when something like the SGX543 MP4 could have performed quite well with good battery life.

    In other words, they are using the same GPU as my old now defunct Galaxy S.
  • 0 Hide
    nuvon , January 8, 2013 5:49 PM
    Lexington, processor for third world countries.
  • Display all 14 comments.
  • -1 Hide
    Daedalus12 , January 8, 2013 5:55 PM
    Holiday 2013? Seems like a long way off.

    Even with Medfield, Intel is virtually a non player in the phone space right now. I would have expected them to leverage their 22nm process for mobile SoC's well before then. Unless they have some other great SoC's coming out soon, it seems like they are wasting time.
  • 3 Hide
    robholden , January 8, 2013 6:24 PM
    Daedalus12Holiday 2013? Seems like a long way off. Even with Medfield, Intel is virtually a non player in the phone space right now. I would have expected them to leverage their 22nm process for mobile SoC's well before then. Unless they have some other great SoC's coming out soon, it seems like they are wasting time.

    bay trail is a tablet solution (update to the currently shipping clovertrail), not a phone solution, so not sure why you bought medfield in to this... It has full x86 functionality... (although don't bother trying to run anything needing any real power...)
  • 3 Hide
    InvalidError , January 8, 2013 6:25 PM
    Daedalus12Unless they have some other great SoC's coming out soon, it seems like they are wasting time.

    Intel is still a relatively new player in the SoC market. The first generations of Atoms were not particularly successful but Intel is getting pretty serious about it. The newest Atoms manage to beat some of the newest ARM chips in many benchmarks on both power and performance. I wasn't expecting that considering how much legacy crud x86 CPUs have to waste power on.

    Seems like Intel already has some quite decent SoCs, albeit possibly not for 3D mobile gaming.
  • -1 Hide
    g00fysmiley , January 8, 2013 6:27 PM
    intel seems to have some nice soc and low power designs its a sham we don't see em in many products i would love an x86 reasonably priced tablet competing with arm
  • 0 Hide
    deksman , January 8, 2013 6:28 PM
    CazalanI was expecting more than 2x with twice the cores. They must have had to scale back the clocks to get that many cores in.

    Scaling back core clocks has little to do with how many cores they can cram on a die - it has more to do with power consumption and heat generation.

    Also... the article is rather vague on performance.
    Is the 2x performance increase due to the architecture only, or is it because of both architecture and added cores?
    If its the former, then you would basically see 2x higher performance due to architecture clock per clock on a single core, and then add 3 more cores to the mix.
    If its the latter, then Intel either had to scale back the individual core clocks due to power/thermal constraints.

    Reducing the die itself to 22nm (using Silicon - which is SORELY outdated for computer chips) also means cramming more transistors into a smaller area - that alone will create higher thermal footprint (so in this case, using Silicon, the lower you go, the hotter it will get, and Intel will have to continuously make various cutbacks if they insist on using Silicon - which is probably what they will do until they milk it dry - nevermind that we had the ability to use far superior synthetic materials and methods of production for computer construction a long time ago, that would in turn make computers of today look like they were 60 to 100 years old - which they are, seeing how our scientific knowledge and practical application of it is basically by that much ahead of anything we presently use).

  • 2 Hide
    ginghus_khan2000 , January 8, 2013 6:53 PM
    What is up with Intel their blindness to video performance? I suppose from their perspective 90% of users don't care but.... jeez! Why bother with crazy fast processors and crappy video cards? Over and over.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , January 8, 2013 7:04 PM
    I think people are way off on what they are saying. Intel's new architecture is supposed to be out of order, along with die shrink, along with new baseband technology, etc. It is a completely different architecture and not something you can do in a short period of time. I don't know wht the vague 2x number means. It could mean 2x the performance per core which is believable considering the improvement in architecture. I doubt it is 2x the performance over a chip with 1/2 the cores. They could do that right now with Atom while not changing the architecture. Intel previously said they will reduce power with this new architecture even with more cores and better graphics. Supposedly, they are moving to a new graphics architecture on the Tablet side (same as Haswell). That is a lot of change for 1 cycle. I would be surprised if they get this out by next holiday season.

  • 0 Hide
    somebodyspecial , January 8, 2013 10:51 PM
    The crappy video is on the 3rd world country crap (atom lexington). No mention of the BAY trail chips gpus here. But if you read the REAL article, you see they mention 2.4ghz and INTEL GPU (uh oh...LOL). No powervr...I'm thinking that's a bad thing on the gpu but who knows. I think they should stay with someone else's tech until they can actually get their own FASTER. Nobody wants the slowest out there, so no matter the speed of your cpu, if you're gpu is 1/2 as fast as your competitor you just lost the design wins race. Mate it with the best gpu out there until you can put competition out of business (or hurt them a lot first) then maybe you can try this IN HOUSE crap...IF you're not faster YOU LOSE in phones/tablets in most cases. You have to have a good balanced chip, Intel doesn't so far. They can't take out the OLD tegra3 at 1.3 in gpu (40nm that toms recently wrote on), much less the current Tegra3+ which is 30% faster at 1.6-1.7 at 28nm. Let's not even talk about the exynos5 etc...They kill tegra3+ and make intel look like they should have just gone home and quit (single core gpu?). Whatever intel.
  • 0 Hide
    ojas , January 9, 2013 10:38 AM
    Ok just looked at the PR text on the engadget website, Zak's left out the more interesting stuff.

    Lower-power Intel® Core™ processor lineup reaches as low as 7 watts, enabling thinner, lighter, touch-based Ultrabook convertibles, detachables and tablets.
    4th generation Intel® Core™ processor family (formerly codenamed "Haswell") will enable a broad new range of Ultrabook convertibles, detachables and tablets with all-day battery life; the biggest battery life gain over a previous generation in company's history

    4th Generation Intel Core processors provide 3-5 hours of additional battery life when compared to 3rd Generation Intel Core processors, based on measurement of 1080p HD video playback.

    "The best of Intel is coming to a mobile device near you," said Skaugen. "We are set to deliver the biggest increase in battery efficiency in Intel's history with 4th generation Intel® Core™ processors, while adding broad new human interfaces to computing devices through touch, voice, facial recognition, and gesture-based interactions. We're also significantly extending the performance and power savings in Atom™ processors as we accelerate our mobile offerings in an unprecedented fashion in 2013."

    Intel Inside® Smartphones
    Building on the progress first detailed a year ago at CES, Intel unveiled a new low-power Atom™ processor-based platform (formerly "Lexington") and smartphone reference design, targeted at the value smartphone market segment, which industry sources predict could reach 500 million units by 2015. Customers announcing support for the platform include Acer*, Lava International* and Safaricom*.

    The new value offering includes many high-end features including the Intel Atom processor Z2420 with Intel Hyper-Threading Technology that can achieve speeds of 1.2 GHz, 1080p hardware-accelerated encode/decode, and support for up to two cameras delivering advanced imaging capabilities, including burst mode that allows people to capture seven pictures in less than a second in 5-megapixel quality. The platform also includes the Intel XMM 6265 HSPA+ modem that offers Dual Sim/Dual Standby capability for cost-conscious consumers.

    Bell also highlighted the forthcoming Intel Atom Z2580 processor platform (formerly "Clover Trail+") targeted at performance and mainstream smartphones. The platform includes a dual core Atom processor with Intel Hyper-Threading Technology, and also features a dual-core graphics engine. He said the new platform will deliver up to two times the performance benefits over Intel's current-generation solution (Intel Atom processor Z2460 platform), while also offering competitive power and battery life.

    He also unveiled details about the company's next-generation 22nm Atom SoC, codenamed "Bay Trail," which is already booting and scheduled to be available for holiday 2013. The first quad-core Atom SoC will be the most powerful Atom processor to date, delivering more than two times the computing performance of Intel's current generation tablet offering. It will also include new improved integrated security offerings. These improvements will enable new experiences for business and personal use in devices as thin as 8mm that have all-day battery life and weeks of standby, all at lower prices.

    ...To enable these innovative designs, Intel announced last September that it added a new line of processors to its forthcoming 4th generation Intel Core processor family targeted at about 10 watt design power...
    Skaugen announced today that the company is bringing the low-power line of processors into its existing 3rd generation Intel Core processor family. Available now, these chips will operate as low as 7 watts, allowing manufacturers greater flexibility in thinner, lighter convertible designs...
    The 4th generation Intel Core processor family enables true all-day battery life -- representing the most significant battery life capability improvement in Intel history. Skaugen disclosed that new systems are expected to deliver up to 9 hours of continuous battery life

    And some more stuff.
  • 0 Hide
    ojas , January 9, 2013 10:41 AM
    Basically, i think Bay Trail will compete with all A15 implementations except the likes of the Snapdragon 800, which will have to face low power haswell parts.

    Also, Bay Trail = Intel IGP

    Lexington (Clover Trail+) = SGX540 or similar.
  • 0 Hide
    costeakai , January 9, 2013 12:36 PM
    baytrail has out-of-order execution. anyway, if nvidia's chief becomes intel+nvidia's chief, the arm-vs-x86-game should be over soon, much too soon for everybody else, including apple,samsung, amd, qualcom, tsmc, and the list goes on and on and on...