Intel saves batteries, pumps multimedia with Centrino 2

Intel launched Centrino 2, the laptop platform that boosts laptop battery and delivers speedier performance, improved multimedia and faster wireless.

Intel on Monday launched Centrino 2, its latest mobile platform, which the company claims will increase laptop battery life while delivering speedier performance and faster wireless connectivity.

After four refreshes, the new chipset platform is Intel's first major Centrino upgrade after its predecessor was launched in 2003. Running faster processors, the Centrino 2 platform feature will better multimedia performance while consuming less power, the company said.

Laptops with the Centrino 2 platform include Core 2 Duo processors running between 2.26GHz and 3.06GHz, a graphics chipset capable of handling high-definition graphics and a wireless chipset. Three of the new Core 2 Duo processors run at 25 watts for lower power consumption compared to earlier processors, which ran at 35 watts of higher.

Intel plans to ship a quad-core Core 2 chip for the platform later this year for gaming, said Mooly Eden, vice president of Intel's mobile platforms group, during a launch event in San Francisco. Centrino 2 chips are manufactured using the 45-nanometer process.

A gaggle of new wireless connectivity features in the wireless chipset includes support for 802.11n wireless networking and WiMax wireless broadband. Laptop vendors like Lenovo are planning to offer additional mobile broadband options like UWB (ultra-wideband) in future Centrino 2 laptops.

Some users spend more time with their laptops than their wives, so it was important to include better entertainment options on Centrino 2 laptops, Eden said.

The laptops will be able to handle 3D graphics and high-definition content through the new GMA X4500MHD integrated graphics processor. The chipset supports DirectX 10 and is capable of off-loading the processor by taking on heavier graphics loads by hardware-based decoding. Users will be able to watch a two-hour Blu-ray movie on a single six-cell battery charge, Intel officials said.

"The world is going to high-definition... it will happen this year or next year," Eden said. By 2013, the number of Blu-ray drives shipping in laptops will outnumber Blu-ray drive shipments in game consoles, he said.

To improve multimedia performance while saving battery life in laptops, Intel has added technology called Switchable graphics to the Centrino 2 platform. The laptops can switch from a discrete graphics card to an integrated graphics processor when running on a battery. Users will have the option to switch between cards either manually or automatically.

Intel also announced Centrino 2 for vPro, which has security management features allowing remote fixes.

The new platform and its graphics chipset make the company more competitive with Advanced Micro Devices, whose Puma laptop platform raised the bar in handling high-definition content, said Nathan Brookwood, principal analyst at Insight 64. "Integrated graphics has never been Intel's strong point in the notebook [space]. They are committed to eliminating graphics as a source of competitive weakness," Brookwood said.

Companies including Lenovo, Hewlett-Packard and Fujitsu have announced new business and ultraportable laptops based on the Centrino 2 platform.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?