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by Mike Zazaian September 29, 2006 - 9:27am, 1 Comment

Yahoo's take on the UMPC

While Intel’s initial line-up of Ultra-Moble PCs never really came to fruition, a much-updated design unveiled at the Intel Developer’s Forum in San Francisco marks the product that was promised by Intel a year ago.

Developed in conjunction with Microsoft, Intel today unveiled its latest attempt at an Ultra-Moble PC platform. According to Intel, new UMPCs will be capable of 18 hours of battery life, equipped with a 5-inch LCD. While Intel has confirmed that Core 2 Duo chips won’t be used in the UMPCs, there has been no official word as to what will go under the hood.

Many are speculating that due to power consumption issues, Intel will use an ultra-low voltage Core Solo with 1 MB of L2 cache, a chip that’s much less power-hungry than it’s Duo counterpart. Dadi Perlmutter, a Senior Vice President at Intel, didn’t confirm the rumors, but did mention that processors in the new UMPCs will:

Consume approximately half the power of today’s CPUs with approximately one-fourth the package size.

Originally dubbed origami, the UMPC platform was announced at last year’s Intel Developer’s Forum. And while the nifty mock-ups that Intel showed off at the conference seemed nifty, their promises for the first-gen device were completely hollow. Intel touted the then-new devices as costing no more than $500, but when all was said in done UMPC models hit shelves at $1,400.

Without an established market segment in which to operate, the initial run of the UMPC in 2005 was a total failure. Hopefully the updates that Intel has made to the UMPC lineup will make them commercially viable, although we’re still not sure if consumers are ready for a computer product that fits in the empty space between laptops and hand-held mobile devices. That said, UMPCs will begin to ship sometime between the end of 2006 and mid-2007.

[via engadget]