According to Digitimes, Intel's road map for the rest of 2009 is crystal clear and full of code names. Released Tuesday morning, the report shows that Intel is ready to start up-selling consumers on fancier new portable processors later this year across its entire product line. It's a triple-front chip attack on your holiday wallet.
The highest-end ($1,200 and higher) machines will run the long-awaited dual-core "Calpella" platform, which basically refers to better-performing chips. Midrange machines ($700-$1,000) will get CULV-based processors, low-voltage dual-core CPUs that give more of a real notebook performance, as opposed to the currently limited Atom horsepower of Netbooks. (CULV stands for "consumer ultra-low-voltage.")
As for the ever-affordable Netbook line, where users can get a new Dell for only $299, expect the current Atom processors to be sold through the summer in advance of upgraded fancier new Netbook processors--with faster integrated graphics, and probably higher price points--in September. Right now they're code-named "Pineview" just to be all top-secret.
CULV is the most intriguing movement. Set to attack the $700-$1,000 price point, dual-core CULV machines will outperform AMD Athlon Neo machines, which are currently faster than Netbooks but slower than full dual-core laptops (the HP Pavilion dv2 runs an AMD Neo). If a fancy Netbook runs for $500, small CULV notebooks will be very attractive upgrades. Would you rather have cheaper or faster? Or both? Either way, 2009's shaping up for some big processor changes.