Intel's official Core 2 Duo launch event, held in a large tent just outside the company's Santa Clara office building, felt a little bit like fluff, considering we got a peek at Core 2 Duo desktop chips last week. But Intel did have a bit of news on the laptop side, committing to an end-of-August time frame for new Core 2 Duo laptop processors to appear in notebooks on store shelves--sadly, too late for many college-bound students who want the latest technology in their back-to-school laptops.
Sean Maloney, Intel's chief sales and marketing officer, spent a lot of his presentation building a case for faster performance, given the growth of an interactive, multimedia Web and the approaching proliferation of affordable high-definition cameras for home users. To that end, the company is claiming that Core 2 Duo-based notebooks will see a 20 percent performance increase over previous-generation Core Duo systems, with the same battery consumption. I just wish the power-saving features that allow for the performance boost (for all the geekery, check out Intel's Core 2 Duo page), had resulted in some battery savings as well, so that laptops could someday last a full day away from the wall socket.
Still, though, to the legions of laptop users who rarely lift their machines from their desks, this is good news. If Intel's percentage is accurate, users should be able to multitask and work with multimedia more easily with one of the new Core 2 Duo laptops. CNET Labs is expecting to receive some Core 2 Duo test systems in August, so keep an eye out for the results of our performance tests.