Intel re-enters smartphone market with Atom chip

US chip vendor Intel has confirmed its designs on the burgeoning smartphone space with the unveiling of its latest Atom processor – the Z6xx – formerly known as ‘Moorestown’.

Giving Intel a platform to target the “high-end smartphones, tablets and handheld devices” spaces, the Atom Z6xx promises to increase idle time power reduction by 50 fold (compared to previous generations of the Atom), while increasing performance, reducing size, and still providing such features as fast internet, multi-tasking, 1080p video, 3D graphics, multi point videoconferencing and voice.

Intel exited the mobile devices business in 2006, when it sold its XScale unit to Marvell Technology. The firm has since been chipping away at the market, spurred on by the success of mobile internet devices (MIDs) and netbooks with its Atom platform.

“Intel has delivered its first product that is opening the door for Intel Architecture [IA] in the smartphone market segment,” said Anand Chandrasekher, Intel senior vice president and general manager of the Ultra Mobility Group. “Through “Moorestown,” Intel is scaling the benefits of IA while significantly reducing the power, cost and footprint to better address handheld market segments,” Chandrasekher said.

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