In announcing what it says is a simpler structure, Intel said it would us three processor levels, the Core i7, Core i5, and Core i3. The first represents the highest performing chips while the latter reflects the lowest end of the spectrum. Starting next year, Core i7 and Core i5 chips would include Intel's vPro security and management technology used by businesses.
The Centrino name, introduced in 2003, would be dropped as a mobile PC platform brand beginning in 2010. Instead, it would become the new name for Intel's Wi-Fi and WiMax wireless product lines. Centrino is used currently to cover a combination of mainboard chipset, mobile processor and wireless network interface for laptops.
Intel would continue to use the Celeron name for chips targeted at inexpensive, entry-level computers, and the Pentium brand for PCs that provide basic computing. The Atom name would continue to be used for processors targetting devices ranging from netbooks to smartphones.
Intel said the changes are needed because the current structure is too confusing for consumers and businesses. "The fact of the matter is, we have a complex structure with too many platform brands, product names, and product brands, and we've made things confusing for consumers and IT buyers in the process," Intel spokesman Bill Calder said in a corporate blog.
Changing branding is not unusual for companies, particularly when the naming structure is seen as getting too confusing for customers. Intel formally launched the Core i7 brand in November of last year with the release of quad-core desktop products.
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