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Intel Keynote: Wireless everywhere

Posted: 03 Jun 2015 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Computex 2015? Intel Unite? wireless charging? Thunderbolt?

Initially, in 2006, Intel integrated a manageability engine into the chipset so that they could introduce new features via firmware updates. From there, vPro added data security, hardware remote KVM, host-based configuration as well as Pro Wireless Display and Wireless Docking.

Intel announced a third segment after "secure platform" and "wireless workplace:" collaboration and Intel Unite. Intel Unite is essentially a PIN-code based meeting platform that allows you to share your screen and collaborate. Intel sees you getting a Core vPro based mini PC for a conference room and the Intel Unite software to run on client devices. Skaugen mentioned that this will work with both PCs and Macs.

Intel Iris Pro

Figure 2: Intel claims that integrating graphics into the 5th generation Intel Core processors gives it a 100x performance boost over the 1st generation of Core processors.

It sounds a bit like Dropbox or Box marrying Skype and you can get in only with a temporary PIN code. But it does seem like a well-rounded conferencing plan when you consider that apart from peer-to-peer screen and file sharing and annotation, Intel Unite connects you to new or existing displays, projectors and interactive whiteboards.

Skaugen continued to push the wireless message pretty much throughout the rest of the press conference, even talking about mobile gaming enabled by integrating graphics (Intel Iris Pro) in the 5th generation Intel Core processors. He said integrating the graphics resulted in a smaller footprint, smaller power envelope and a lower bill of materials (BoM).

Skaugen announced the Thunderbolt 3 that, being a wired interface technology, stood out like a sore thumb in an otherwise wireless conversation. You would recall that USB-C has been embraced by both Apple and Google, leaving us wondering what would happen to Intel's Thunderbolt since there's much overlap in their interface functionality.

Intel has come up with a reason for Thunderbolt's existence: "it delivers the best USB-C." Confused? OK, this is what they have done: essentially, they have adopted the USB-C connector with Thunderbolt 3. You will get the USB-C specified power and data transfers but, if you have Thunderbolt devices, you can get up to 40Gbit/s in Thunderbolt mode. Is that not a compromise you can live with?

Thunderbolt 3

Figure 3: If you can't beat them, join them: the Thunderbolt 3 connector supports USB-C and goes on to support higher data rates in Thunderbolt mode.


- Vivek Nanda
??EE Times Asia


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