Yes, it turns out that you will indeed need a stinking badge on your laptop. Intel on Thursday unveiled the "visual identifier" that will be used on laptops that meet its new Project Athena verification: a graphic that says "Engineered for Mobile Performance," along with the Intel logo.
Project Athena is an ambitious, sprawling, and probably confusing Intel program to get PC makers to take laptops to the next level. It's designed to make thin-and-light laptops faster, longer lasting, and all around better for road warriors. Project Athena 1.0 laptops will focus on:
- Instant Action: To eliminate or lower waiting for your laptop to wake up.
- Performance and Responsiveness: A minimum performance spec including at least a Core i5, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD.
- Intelligence: Support for AI acceleration, such as on Intel's new 10th-gen Core chips.
- Battery Life: Charging over USB-PD/C, and power efficiency optimization.
- Connectivity: WiFi 6 and/or Gigabit LTE and Thunderbolt 3.
- Form Factor: Touch screen, precision trackpads, and narrow bezels.
If a lot of that sounds like its within reach using today's technology, it already is. In fact, Dell's new XPS 13 2-in-1 7390 that went on sale this morning will be the first laptop to carry the new "Engineered for Mobile Performance" graphic. Although not touted as a Project Athena feature, the XPS 13 2-in-1 includes an extra feature that strikes to the core of what Intel's initiative aims to achieve: "A built in sensor allows you to open the lid and power up in milliseconds, no matter what power-state you are in."
Besides the XPS 13 2-in-1, Intel said HP’s Elitebook 1040 and Elitebook 830 have also been verified. Both Elitebook models are on sale today as well. Both are based on 8th-gen CPUs.
Project Athena won’t only touch Windows-based laptops either. Intel has also signed up Google to get Chromebooks on board.