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‘Pineview’ Intel Atom to be smaller, faster

Details have been leaked of Intel next-gen Atom processor for netbooks and net-tops, arriving in the second half of 2009.

Intel's Atom processor, the de facto choice of most netbook manufacturers, is set to get a major reduction in size and a performance boost for its next version, according to reports.

Codenamed Pineview' the chip will appear in single-core and dual-core flavours, and as with current Atom models will be built on Intel's 45nm process.

Like Intel's current desktop champion, the Core i7 Nehalem, the new CPU will feature an integrated memory controller. It will also feature a graphics processor integrated into the die of the processor itself. This will reduce the amount of space needed on motherboard by up to 60 per cent.

As a result, motherboard printed circuit board design will be reduced from six layers to four layers. This is simpler to produce and should lead to cost savings for manufacturers.

The tight integration will lead to power savings, with peak output dropping from 8W to 7W, with idle usage down to 2W. The core clock is also likely to see an increase over today's common 1.6GHZ of the Atom N270 and memory speeds will increase from 533Mhz to 667MHz. The result will be more powerful netbooks with longer battery life.

Intel's has already said that Pineview will be arriving in the second half of next year, while reports suggest is is likely to be closer to the start of this period.

Intel could not be reached for comment at the time of writing.

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