The Intel Atom is going to be appearing in more places than just the countless number of nettops and netbooks of today (and tomorrow).
Intel at IDF announced the Atom CE4100 processor, which was formerly codenamed Sodaville. The CE4100 is a System-on-Chip processor that integrates not only the Atom core, but also a display processor, graphics processor, video display controller, transport processor, a dedicated security processor and general I/O including SATA-300 and USB 2.0.
Such a package is designed to be the core to digital TVs, DVD players and advanced set-top boxes – particularly as more consumer devices become net-connected for streaming content and other media.
"Traditional broadcast networks are quickly shifting from a linear model to a multi-stream, Internet-optimized model to offer consumers digital entertainment that complements the TV such as social networking, 3-D gaming and streaming video," said Eric Kim, senior vice president and general manager, Intel Digital Home Group. "At the center of the TV evolution is the CE4100 media processor, a new architecture that meets the critical requirements for connected CE devices."
The CE4100 will run up to 1.2 GHz in order to stay power friendly for set-top devices. It is backward compatible with the outgoing Pentium-based CE3100 and supports hardware decode of up to two 1080p video streams and 3-D graphics and audio standards. New over the CE3100 is decoding hardware for MPEG4 video that is ready for DivX Home Theater 3.0 certification, an integrated NAND flash controller, support for both DDR2 and DDR3 memory and 512K L2 cache.
Earlier this week, Intel revealed that the Atom processor would also find a home into BMW and Mercedes-Benz vehicles for the 2012 model year.