Intel announces new brand name for chips

Intel will sell its new generation of 65-nanometer desktop and laptop chips under the brand name “Core 2 Duo” when it launches them this summer, the company said.

Intel, of Santa Clara, California, plans to launch its desktop chip code-named Conroe in July and its laptop chip code-named Merom in August.

“You could kind of say we’re core crazy,” said company spokesman Bill Kircos. “It’s a way of saying ‘Hey, this isn’t your grandfather’s PC’.”

Intel’s new server chip, code-named Woodcrest, is not included in this plan, although the company plans to launch it in June, Kircos said.

All three chips will be built with Intel’s new 65-nanometer Core Microarchitecture design. After their launch, Intel will have a common architecture for its consumer, gaming, notebook and business desktop lines.

Chip vendors such as Intel and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) have designed their latest processors with multiple cores in each chip as an energy-efficient way to process more software code without increasing clock speed, heat and electricity. Just like cars, faster chips are generally less efficient.

Under Intel’s new marketing plan, both the desktop and laptop chips will be called Core 2 Duo, and distinguished by a five-digit code to follow.

The first digit will be a letter connoting the power draw of the chip, ranging from “U” for ultra low voltage (below 15 watts) to “L” for low voltage (15 to 24 watts), “T” for standard mobile (25 to 55 watts), E for standard desktop (55 to 75 watts) and “X” for extreme (above 75 watts).

The next four digits will be a numeric code, with Conroe chips in the 4000 and 6000 series and Merom chips in the 5000 and 7000 series. Additional numbers will represent extra features such as the chips’ suitability for Intel platforms like Centrino for mobile PCs, Viiv for home entertainment or vPro for business desktops.

For example, a high-end desktop chip might be called the Core 2 Duo E6800. And Intel will call its high-end gaming desktop processor the “Core 2 Extreme.”

The new name will supersede the “Pentium D” brand for desktops, and eventually take over for future chip designs such as four-core and eight-core processors, Kircos said.

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