Intel expects to ship its first processor with four cores in the early part of next year, boosting PC server performance.
News of an impending four-core solution comes as Intel expects to sell about 60 million dual-core chips this year.
The new four-core chip is codenamed Clovertown and bundles four processors on a single platform.
Such a processor uses less power than single-core designs and allows machines to process data more quickly and run more applications at the same time.
Intel said Clovertown would be aimed at servers that run enterprise networks and host websites. It said the chip would be sold in servers with sockets for two four-core processors, which means the servers could have as many as eight cores for processing data rapidly.
Intel has so far not said whether the four-core chip will be four processors on a single piece of silicon or whether it will be two dual-core processors stuck together.
A single silicon wafer solution is more power-efficient but harder to manufacture.