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New Chip Set Size, Efficiency Could Provide Boon to Intel

October 05, 1990|DEAN TAKAHASHI

Intel Corp. is expected to announce this month a new chip set that will allow for further miniaturization and greater energy efficiency in laptop and notebook-sized computers, industry analysts said Thursday.

The chip set, developed under the code name Genesis, will combine the functions of many chips into two chips, analysts said. The chip set will incorporate the functions of an Intel 80386SX microprocessor and three to five peripheral logic chips that are necessary in computers. The 80386SX drives computers in the high-performance personal computer market.

The chip set is expected to result in smaller laptop and notebook-sized computers with longer battery lives, said Michael Slater, editor of the Microprocessor Report. It also should enable Mountain View-based Intel to take back a lot of business from competing chip makers, such as Chips & Technologies Inc. in San Jose and Western Digital Corp. in Irvine, he said.

By putting various functions onto only two chips, Intel will reduce the power requirements and size of the electronic gadgetry in laptop computers, making it possible to add more memory or extend the length of time the laptop can operate on battery supply, Slater said.

"It's definitely the first time this level of integration has been applied," said Dean McCarron, analyst at In-Stat, a market research firm in Scottsdale, Ariz. "They'll take some money from other chip-set suppliers."

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