The last time I saw Justin Ratner we were at 10 Downing Street with the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Back then he wasn’t wearing a pair of robotic, furry ears though. Ratner’s light-hearted mood extended to taking a small pop at his old colleague Pat Gelsinger, firing up a video of a keynote Gelsinger had given ten years ago.
In the video Gelsinger was predicting that every chip would have a wireless radio built into it. It was clearly a bold claim, and according to Ratner, there was nothing in place to indicate that it would ever become a reality. But today, ten years later, it appears that Gelsinger’s vision is starting to take shape.
Today Intel unveiled the Moore’s Law Radio – a digital Wi-Fi radio built on Intel’s 32nm technology. Not only is Moore’s Law Radio a completely digital solution, it can also be integrated directly onto the CPU silicon.
Ratner showed off the radio working in a reference module, transferring high definition video from an Ultrabook to an external monitor. But even more impressive was the wafer that Ratner showed off, a wafer of dual-core Atom chips with Moore’s Law Radios integrated into each of them.
Okay, we’re still not quite at the point where every chip will have integrated wireless, but Moore’s Law Radio is definitely a big step towards that goal. So, despite the fact Justin insists he’ll never base a keynote on anything that his engineers haven’t told him is possible, perhaps Pat’s blue sky vision wasn’t that wide of the mark after all.