According to a new report by DigiTimes, Intel's upcoming Oak Trail platform is right on track for an early 2011 launch with mass production already underway. Oak Trail's Atom Z6XX series system-on-a-chip (codenamed Lincroft) is designed for lightweight portable computing devices such as tablets, and with dozens of manufacturers looking to enter the slate business next year, Intel's new platform is in a prime position to bag some design wins.
Lincroft incorporates an Atom processor core, an Intel GMA 600 graphics core, as well as a 32-bit LPDDR1/DDR2 memory controller and video encoder/decoder. That's paired with an SM35 IO hub (also known as Whitney Point), and according to DigiTimes' sources, Intel plans to sell the duo with its Linux-based MeeGo operating system for only $25. That's pretty dang cheap, and Intel could find itself in a comfortable position next to ARM.
Naturally, that price increases if you factor in the cost of Windows, which most consumers are familiar with and would undoubtedly prefer over MeeGo. Meanwhile, Intel claims that Oak Trail consumes up to 50% less power on average and can handle full HD video, but ARM president Tudor Brown isn't sweating the competition. "ARM-designed processors are still expected to remain the dominant technology for tablet PCs," Brown said.