Intel moves a step closer to perceptual computing with 4th Gen Core Processor

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Intel-4th-GenEven as the 3rd generation Intel Core Processors, launched last year, continue to wow users, who are still getting used to the power that Ultrabooks provide, Intel has launched its 4th Generation Core Processors, which enable new form factors, two-in-one designs, 50 per cent improvement in battery life and an Intel Iris graphics that delivers up to double the graphics performance over the previous generation.

According to Phillips, Director – Product Management & Pricing, Platform Marketing and Business Operations, Intel Asia-Pacific, the lines are blurring between consumption (tablets and smartphones) and creation (Ultrabook and notebook) devices. “We are moving into a world where we remove the ‘desk’ from the ‘desktop’, leaving behind the constraints and making a single device used for multiple things by multiple users,” says Leighton Phillips, Director – Product Management & Pricing, Intel Asia-Pacific. He further adds that the ‘U’ series is the engine of the Ultrabook – it uses all of the specifications to drive a certain experience, it could be touch, it could be voice and a number of other features, but there is also sitting underneath the Ultrabook a whole new market that wants capability and graphic performance.

Leighton Phillips, Director - Product Management & Pricing, Intel Asia-Pacific

Leighton Phillips, Director – Product Management & Pricing, Intel Asia-Pacific

“They may want it thin and touch-enabled, but would not be able to buy an Ultrabook and would prefer a mainstream premium notebook. I think by experience, price points and features there are different segments in the market. We will be able to build a market with the 4th Gen Core that scales, we can drive from the two-in-one devices right through to the highest end gaming platform for mobile and desktop,” he adds.

The 4th Generation has four series, the ‘U’ and ‘M’ series for premium notebooks; ‘Y’ series for two in ones and ‘H’ series for enhanced memory. Intel claims that ‘touch’ is everything now and the Ultrabook set the ball rolling for the same. According to a survey, 85-86 per cent users use touch as it acts as an enabler and 60 per cent of the interface of the device becomes touch after 2-3 weeks of use in hybrid devices. The two-in-one Ultrabook devices (notebook and tablet-in-one) have been showcased at the Taiwan symposium for the audience to get the feel of the product and eventually adopt it. Intel also claims that the two-in-one devices are now equipped with multiple platforms; for example, the Samsung Ativ Q has both Android, when it is used as a tablet, and Windows 8, when it is used as a notebook. But why do people prefer two-in-one devices? A research by Intel says that people prefer ease of use, less space consuming and multiple utility devices, among others.

Hence, it is evident that the 4th Gen is focusing at hybrid and two-in-one devices, but how much more different is it from its predecessor? Intel claims that the 3rd Gen has 4.5 days of standby time and up to six hours of video consumption capability; while the 4th has 10-13 days of standby time and 9.7 hours of continuous HD video viewing capability. With the Iris Pro Graphics, it is bound to give enhanced graphics, display and media. The brand also claims that the new generation processors show 35 per cent increase in performance and kick starts in less than three seconds.

Sandeep Aurora, Director, Marketing, Intel South Asia

Sandeep Aurora, Director, Marketing, Intel South Asia

Intel claims that the ‘M’ and the ‘U’ series are for premium notebooks. So, what does ‘premium’ entail? Sandeep Aurora, Director, Marketing, Intel South Asia, says that ‘premium’ engulfs the pricing, experience, and sizes, among others. “For example, the two-in-ones are going to be premium for a while, it needs a different kind of mechanism, it needs a special hinge, a special slider and various things. Eventually, it comes on mainstream, when we launch the 4th Gen processor, it enables the normal desktop, the AIOs, normal laptops, touch laptops and two-in-ones. So, there are certain products focused at the two-in-ones and the mainstream series. From a performance standpoint, consumers will be able to know the difference.

Intel plans to have this new processor fit in with its existing communication, slowly phasing out the 3rd generation. Aurora says, “The 4th gen will get integrated into the campaigns that we are running now; the campaign will be about the goodness of the device and not the processor per se. Within the goodness of the device, the message of the processor fits in, so seamlessly 4th Gen core will start fitting into all the campaigns.”

Among the OEMs, Acer’s S7 is going to support the 4th Gen processors and the Acer E1572 will be available in the first week of July 2013 with a price tag of Rs 37,000, pegged as a mid-premium product. Among other OEMs, the Dell XPS will have a refreshed look and form of the intel 4th Gen processor. HP, which has a wide range of hybrids and two-in-ones, claims to roll out all the 4th Gen products by Diwali this year; and Lenovo, which already has devices like the YOGA, claims to be soon delivering sleeker products with better AIOs (All-in-ones).

Overall, Intel claims that the new generation core processors will be able to give a more immersive experience, with ‘perceptual computing’ being the next big thing. The technology allows people to interact with their computing devices by using gestures, expressions and voice recognition. With technology moving at this pace, it is not too long that Steven Spielberg movies remain just movies.

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