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Intel New Z600 Platform Is A Threat For Apple & ARM

Intel has two confirmed smartphone partners, Nokia and LG, one mature graphics solution, Imagination's PowerVR which is also used in the iPhone and in a number of other smartphones and of course Meego, the software platform it formally launched with Nokia earlier last month.

So how close is Intel from actually competing with ARM? Well, both very close and quite far. As far as performance is concerned, the Z600 is extremely potent.

Anandtech (opens in new tab), the only website we know that carried some sort of theoretical benchmarking, says that Intel has a real chance of winning the market if its performance claims are valid. They have also seen future Moorestown roadmaps and in their own words, it is very strong.

As for the issues, well, Intel will be facing a more fragmented world in the mobile sector where no one wants it to succeed having seen what it did to the rest of the x86 desktop field (remember Cyrix or VIA?)

Intel is the obvious underdog and needs to convince phone manufacturers to give up on ARM-optimised designs and platforms to adopt Meego and the likes. Arguably, ARM is not sitting still as well.

We know for a fact that ARM's latest platform, the Cortex A9 MPCore can scale to 2GHz and more and can accommodate more than four cores and other manufacturers including Apple will be more than happy to tinker with the little chip.

Interestingly, Apple, Samsung and Motorola are all three chip designers and phone manufacturers. Nokia and LG aren't; ARM gives to the first three, the flexibility of adding their own features, something that Intel won't.

Google (and HTC) and Blackberry will likely steer clear from Intel leaving only Sony Ericsson as the other potential partner for Intel.

Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.