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Intel Shows Off Its Low-Power Processors

August 24, 2000|Charles Piller

Intel Corp. previewed its latest design for high-performance, low-power processors for networking equipment and wireless Internet devices--including the next generation of cellular phones. The new "3G" phones should replace today's digital phones within three years in the U.S. and sooner in Europe and Japan. The high-speed 3G systems will enable a new range of mobile Web applications, including video, CD-quality audio and enhanced text messaging. Analysts predict that more than 1 billion 3G cell phones will be produced over the next few years. They will require more powerful chips than do today's digital phones. Intel hopes its design, due out this year, will capture a major share of that business. Dubbed "XScale," the new chip design will replace the company's StrongARM processor used in many phones today, yet is compatible with existing StrongARM software, analysts said. "The technology [Intel is] showing today looks fairly compelling," going beyond the current offerings by competitors, said Linley Gwennap, a chip analyst with the Linley Group in Mountain View, Calif. Intel demonstrated the new technology at the semiannual meeting of its hardware and software developers in San Jose. Intel shares rose $2.50 to close at $74.63 on Nasdaq.

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