Published in PC Hardware

Intel announces SoFIA, Broxton 2015 Atom

by on22 November 2013

2H 2014, mid-2015 respectively

Intel has held an investor meeting last night and they have mentioned some new codenames and products that have never been mentioned before. Intel CEO Brian Krzanich announced future plans for Atom, including two new processors; one codenamed SoFIA and other coming in 2015 codenamed Braxton.

SoFIA should launch in 2H 2014 and is based on Atom CPU and has a 3G baseband modem. It targets value and entry level market and it launches with 3G modem and will get updated to 4G modem in 2015. Sofia is a 64-bit x86 core, no surprises there, but we didn’t find on what is the manufacturing process for this core. SoFIA LTE is the codename for the LTE version and it is expected in 2015.

Intel mentioned Moorefield, a 22nm quad-core that should ship in the second half of 2014, while the dual core 22nm Merrifield should show up earlier. Merrifield promises a 1.7x performance increase, 2x graphics performance boost, improved battery life and an advanced sensor hub.

Bay Trail Atoms will get a replacement later in 2014. Codenamed Cherry Trail, the next generation Atoms will be based on Airmont and next generation graphics. After that in 2015 comes the Broxton based on next generation Atom Goldmont core, 14nm and next generation graphics. Intel promises "leadership performance for hero devices" and claims that this is converged core for phones and tablets.

Krzanich also mentioned that Intel wants to increase its tablet chip volue sales by as much as 4 times from 2013 level, which might sound like a lot, but then again Intel didn’t won that much market in 2013 making it easier to hit the 4x target. We believe that with Bay Trail tablets, Intel is finial getting on the right track and things should improve further in 2014 at least in the tablet space.

As far as phones go, it will be an uphill struggle as Intel’s first integrated LTE parts are scheduled for 2015 even the likes of Nvidia and Mediatek should have mainstream LTE chips shipping in early 2014, let alone Qualcomm.

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