AMD and Intel have been locked in a CPU arms race for the better part of a decade, but at least for the short term, Intel has turned its focus towards competing with ARM. Consumers have been flocking en-mass to low power mobile devices, and Atom will be the company’s long term strategy to compete on the low end. 2013 will be the year of Clover Trail, however a leaked Intel roadmap is letting us know what we can look forward to in 2014.
Bay Trail-T SOC’s will hit the market beginning in 2014, and will offer similar performance to Clover Trail, only with a 50 percent decrease in power consumption. For those looking for better performance, quad-core variants will offer a 50-60 percent bump in speed, and will be built on a 22nm process. The upcoming Clover Trail chips by comparison will only be 32nm. Bay Trail-T will also feature a new DirectX 11 compliant GPU, with support for resolutions up to 2560x1600.
Perhaps the most interesting part of the leaked roadmap is OS coverage. Both the upcoming Clover Trail chips, and its successor Bay Trail will be 32-bit only. This will limit tablets to 4GB of RAM or less until 2015, and may even force Microsoft to continue developing 32-bit versions of Windows as they plan ahead to Windows 9.
ARM of course has always been 32-bit, but then again this isn’t something that’s actively holding the platform back. Windows 7 & 8 x64 are already the de facto standard on the desktop today.