Intel beefs up Moorestown with HSPA from Ericsson

Upcoming processor platform is aimed at the Mobile Internet Device market

Intel and Ericsson Monday announced plans to team up in an effort to bring High Speed Packet Access to increasingly popular Mobile Internet Devices.

With this move, Ericsson is extending its 3G mobile broadband technology from laptops down to mobile Internet devices, which are small, "pocketable" products that fall between small laptops and smart phones in size and capability.

"This is a big endorsement for Intel - what they're doing now and what they have coming in the future, specifically with its upcoming Moorestown platform," said Dan Olds, principal analyst with the Gabriel Consulting Group. "It will give products based on Intel's Mooretown platform a big boost. The big deal is that products based on this platform will be compatible with the huge HPSA infrastructure. That's a big built-in potential market."

High Speed Packet Access is a third generation (3G) telephony communications protocol that boosts the performance of mobile broadband access. Making better use of network bandwidth, it gives users faster upload and download times.

Anand Chandrasekher, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's Ultra Mobility Group, announced at the Intel Developer Forum in Taiwan that Ericsson's HSPA technology will work with Intel's Moorestown platform. Slated to be released in 2009, Moorestown is the successor to Intel's new Atom chip. Moorestown, which will be aimed directly at the Mobile Internet Device market, is expected to have built-in graphics and video capabilities.

Ericcson's 3G technology also is optimized to work with Moblin-based Linux operating systems.

Intel is betting heavily on the netbook and Mobile Internet Device markets, with small, low-power processors like the Atom chips and the upcoming Moorestown processor line.

The Atom family -- Intel's smallest chips -- has a small footprint, enables long battery life and has low thermals and energy consumption. The architecture, which was reportedly designed from the ground up, includes the 45nm "high-k" transistor formula unveiled with the Penryn family of chips late last year.

"Intel's Moorestown is a big step forward in that it does a much better job addressing Atom's biggest problem, which is power usage," said Olds. "It looks like the new Moorestown will use about 10 times less power at idle, which is a huge improvement."

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