Contrary to what we are often led to believe (that the PC market is declining), there is strength in the personal computers (PCs) market in the APAC region, said Prakash Mallya, Country Manager, Intel Malaysia & Singapore on 20 June in a media briefing in Singapore. "The market is not only stabilizing but growing as well," he said.
"Intel sees a momentum in the 2-in-1 (laptop+tablet) market in the region," said Leighton Phillips, Director, Product Marketing, Intel Asia Pacific & Japan, who was providing a snapshot of Intel's innovative products recently unveiled or displayed at Computex in Taiwan. This category has seen a 150 percent YOY growth between Q2 2013 and Q2 2014.
Speaking on the theme of re-inventing the desktop, Phillips said that desktop is the second biggest business for Intel, the gaming market being the top business category (the latter being forecast to be a US$25 billion market by 2015).
For the gaming enthusiasts, Intel is shipping the Devil's Canyon processor (Intel Core i7-4790K processor) this month. The 4th generation IntelCore i7 and i5 processor "K" SKU are the first from Intel to deliver four cores at up to 4 GHz base frequency. This desktop processor, built for enthusiasts, provide higher performance and enable new levels of overclocking capability.
In the Pentium processor range, Intel is shipping this month the Intel Pentium processor anniversary edition which is now unlocked for performance tuning.
According to Phillips, Intel is seeing highest growth in mini desktops: 50 percent growth in 2014. There are 20 designs for this year in this category.
He also said that Intel is enabling dramatic reduction in screens with 4K resolution. It is working with leading manufacturers to bring down the prices of 4K monitors to the range of below US$400.
The 4th Generation Intel Core Processor
In the multi-year journey to re-invent the notebook, Intel's 4th generation Core Processor is bringing unprecedented benefits to the notebook users, said Phillips. It has enabled the greatest increase in battery life in Intel's history and the graphics performance in ultra-thin form factors is two times stronger. This is the processor that is fuelling the 2-in-1 momentum.
As an example, Phillips displayed the Llama Mountain 2-in-1 reference design: it is the world's first 14nm fanless mobile PC reference design from Intel. The 2 in 1 is a 12.5-inch screen that is 7.2mm thin with keyboard detached and weighs 670 grams. It includes a media dock that provides additional cooling for a burst of performance. The innovative design is based on the first of Intel's next-generation 14nm Broadwell processors that are purpose-built for 2 in 1s and will be in market later this year. Called the Intel Core M processor, it will deliver the most energy-efficient Intel Core processor in the company's history1. The majority of designs based on this new chip are expected to be fanless and deliver both a lightning-fast tablet and a razor-thin laptop.
Phillips said that that Intel currently has 130 tablet design wins that are either in market or will be in market this year, from global OEMs and ODMs.
At Taiwan's Computex this year, Foxconn showcased more than 10 Intel-based tablets available now or coming soon, ranging from the entry to performance segments. The tablets are based on Intel Atom processors (codenamed "Bay Trail" or "Clovertrail+"), and many include Intel's 3G or LTE communications platforms.
The Intel executive said that the company will also bring a quad-core SoFIA LTE part to market in the first half of 2015. Intel has already announced a strategic agreement with Rockchip to add a quad-core SoFIA 3G derivative for entry-level tablets to the SoFIA family, also due in the first half of next year.
User Experience 2014
In order for computing to become more personal, Intel wants to make interaction more natural and intuitive, said Phillips.
In this connection, he highlighted Intel RealSense technology and 3-D cameras that are coming to 2-in-1s, all-in-ones, tablets and other personal computing devices. RealSense and 3D cameras will enable 3D printing of objects and will have implications for real authentication and e-commerce.
The devices will become fully wireless (WiGig-wireless display, wireless charging, wireless docking and wireless data communication) in the near future and wireless charging will become pervasive like wi-fi is today, Phillips predicted.