Intel's Bay Trail chip could find its way into intelligent systems, set-top boxes

Intel is developing a version of its energy-efficient “Bay Trail” Atom chip for embedded devices, which can include products like car computers, set-top boxes, and possibly robots.

Bay Trail chips for tablets, laptops, and desktops were already expected, but there will also be a product called Bay Trail-I targeted at “embedded intelligent systems,” according to a session description for the upcoming Intel Developer Forum.

Details about Bay Trail-I’s performance, power consumption, and customization options are expected to be revealed at the event, which takes place Sept. 10-12 in San Francisco.

Tablets using “Bay Trail-T,” the chip for tablets, are expected in time for the year-end holiday season, priced from $199 or even below, Intel has said. It will also offer Pentium and Celeron chips code-named Bay Trail-M, for laptops, and Bay Trail-D, for desktops.

Bay Trail-I will be the latest in a line of Atom chips for embedded products. It will succeed older chips based on the Cedar Trail platform, which were released in late 2011 and early 2012.

The embedded chips can be used for in-car entertainment systems, digital signage, and a wide variety of other equipment that needs to access services from the Internet.

Bay Trail is based on Intel’s Silvermont microarchitecture, which the company says is faster and more power-efficient than its predecessor. The chips will be manufactured on a 22-nanometer process, in which transistors are stacked on top of each other for more power-efficient data processing.

Intel did not reply to requests for comment on Bay Trail I. The chip will compete with Advanced Micro Devices’ latest G-series and R-series chips. ARM processors are also being used in embedded devices.

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