Intel to launch Deerfield before developer conference

Intel will announce Deerfield, the low-power version of its Itanium 2 chip, next Monday, according to a source familiar with the...

Intel will announce Deerfield, the low-power version of its Itanium 2 chip, next Monday (8 September) before its biannual developer conference gets under way.

The Deerfield chip will consume 62 watts at maximum power, almost half as much as the Madison core. It is expected to debut at 1.0GHz with 1.5Mbytes of Level 3 cache.

The announcement will be followed by the autumn Intel Developer Forum at which the company will review the progress of its quest to bring silicon into every home and provide more details of its plans for server chips and process technologies.

The conference, scheduled to begin on 16 September in San Jose, features a number of technical sessions for hardware developers as well as keynotes and briefings for analysts and the media.

Intel executives will outline the company's progress over the last six months and shed some light on future projects, said Pat Gelsinger, senior vice-president and chief technology officer at Intel.

Intel's server group has been busy over the past six months with the launch of Madison, the long-awaited improvement to the Itanium 2 processor core that is expected to help speed that chip's adoption.

With the Deerfield announcement, Intel will have a 64-bit chip for blade servers and one- to two-way servers.

The following week at the developers forum, Intel will provide more guidance on Itanium and Xeon chips further down the roadmap, Gelsinger said.

The company is also expected for the first time to speak publicly about a project known as Tanglewood, which is believed to involve the Itanium processor family. Intel has declined to comment on the project.

Intel first discussed its plans for bringing multiple cores to the Itanium 2 processor at last year's Microprocessor Forum, and will likely expand on that idea this year, said Kevin Krewell, senior editor of the Microprocessor Report in San Jose.

Also on the server front, Intel will introduce an initiative called Tiano that will eliminate the last remnants of 8-bit and 16-bit Dos legacy code in the Bios of a system, Gelsinger said.

Louis Burns, vice-president and general manager of the desktop group, will discuss Intel's work on creating the digital home during his keynote address on the first day of IDF. Burns is expected to build on the product announcements for digital media adapters at the last IDF to focus on how to connect digital consumer electronics devices to build a home network, Gelsinger said.

Intel will also introduce a reference design for set-top boxes, he said. Intel showed several reference designs for media products at February's Spring IDF, including digital media adapters and next-generation media PCs.

Anand Chandrasekher, vice-president and co-general manager of the mobile platforms groups, will talk about the next generation of the Pentium M processor, as well as a mobile chipset during his keynote on the second day of the show.

Gelsinger will close the show with a look inside future projects underway at Intel Labs, including an update on the company's work integrating radios into silicon. He will also discuss technologies that Intel is working on to establish seamless roaming for mobile users between internet connection zones.

Tom Krazit writes for IDG News Service

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