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Intel looks beyond WiMax, readies Core i7 chip

The chipmaker is adding HSPA support to its upcoming "Moorestown" smartphone platform. Plus: More details on Nehalem.

There's life beyond WiMax. At the Intel Developer Forum in Taipei Intel is looking beyond that wireless technology to other communications methods for its upcoming Moorestown smartphone platform.

Intel senior vice president Anand Chandrasekher, speaking Monday at IDF, said that Intel will collaborate with Ericsson for High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) data modules for the Moorestown platform. WiMax is also supported, but it faces stiff competition from entrenched wireless technologies and may not be compelling enough to rise above the fray.

In addition to WiMax and HSPA, other wireless technologies including WiFi, GPS, Bluetooth, and mobile TV will be supported on Moorestown, Intel said.

Moorestown is a system-on-a-chip (SOC) comprised of "Lincroft," which integrates a 45-nanometer processor, graphics, memory controller, and video encode/decode onto a single chip. It also includes an "I/O hub" code-named Langwell that supports connection to wireless, storage, and display components.

Intel was also showing a number of slides that detail its upcoming Nehalem i7 processor and the accompanying X58 chipset. Intel said last week that Nehalem is shipping now and is due to be officially rolled out in November.

The i7 will initially appear as a quad-core processor and feature QuickPath Interconnect--a high-speed chip-to-chip communications technology--and "Turbo Boost," which had been referred to previously as "Turbo Mode." This is essentially a switch that turns off unused processor cores and then uses the remaining active cores more efficiently.

In Taipei, Intel also delineated the differences between Atom-based "Nettop" desktops and more mainstream desktop PCs. Intel is trying to promote Nettops for Web browsing, word processing, e-mail, and "legacy" games. Anything more taxing than these basic applications is not recommended for Nettops.

Intel Core i7 and x58 chipset features
Intel Core i7 and x58 chipset features. Intel

Intel Atom-based Nettop desktop
Intel Atom-based Nettop desktop. Intel