Intel has been talking a lot about its integrated graphics cores and by next year Intel will have moved to 65nm. This will allow them to add full HD video decoding, as well as support for DVI, HDMI and Display Port natively into their chipset.
But that’s not really the big news, as Intel claims that by 2010 it will improve its integrated graphics performance by 10 times and have better than console level graphics. However, by then we’re not talking chipset graphics anymore, as from 2009 on Intel will start to integrate graphics into its CPU cores.
The interesting part here is that Intel will have integrated graphics not only in its entry level and mobile CPUs, but also in its mainstream processors. By moving to 45nm next year and to 32nm within the next two to three years, Intel will have a lot more die space into which it can fit its graphics architecture.
With integrated memory controllers, QuickPath architecture and now integrated graphics added into the CPU packaging, it is looking as if Intel is following AMD, and soon its chipsets will be PCI Express tunnels and very little else. We can only presume that Intel’s slogan will be something like, “Buy an Intel CPU, get free Intel graphics”.
There wasn’t much talk about Intel discrete graphics. The only thing that was really mentioned was the fact that Intel will offer a top to bottom range of cards and that you might want Intel’s integrated CPU graphics for other reasons, which might be a hint to an Intel hybrid SLI type of solution.
In the near future you can expect to see hardware vertex shading in the next set of upcoming drivers from Intel, as well as DX10 drivers sometime near the end of Q1 ’08 or the beginning of Q2.