Haswell, which will follow Ivy Bridge as 22 nm processors with a new, fourth-generation micro-architecture, is almost entirely focused on power consumption and new computer form factors this will enable.
Intel said that Haswell will improve platform idle-power over the second-generation Core processor, Sandy Bridge, by more than 20x. The company also promised a portfolio of even lower-power processors based on Haswell for 2013. Low-power Haswell CPUs will initially target a power envelope of 10 watts.
In a product demonstration, executive vice president David Perlmutter showed that Haswell processors will deliver about two times the performance of Ivy Bridge processors at the same power, while consuming less than half the power of Ivy Bridge processors at the same performance level. Needless to say, Haswell will be Intel's power play for Ultrabooks and thin form factor PCs.
"The 4th generation Intel Core processor family and our new line of low-power processors will usher in an era of unprecedented innovation in mobile computing," Perlmutter said. "Our focus to deliver even lower power with the great performance that our processors are known for is as fundamentally significant as when we shifted our development focus beyond sheer processor speed in 2001. As a result, you'll see our customers delivering sleek and cool convertible designs, as well as radical breakthrough experiences across a growing spectrum of mobile devices."
In its original laid out and self-imposed tick-tock cadence from 2005, Haswell would be due for introduction late this year. This may be rather unlikely however and we should rather expect the processors to arrive in H1 2013, as a previously leaked slide indicates.