Intel’s 14nm Broadwell Processor Could Power Macs this Fall

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Speaking from the Maker Faire in San Mateo, California on Saturday, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich promised that Broadwell chips would be inside PCs sold during the holiday but not in time for back-to-school. Intel originally had scheduled Broadwell for the first Quarter of 2015. The move should spark sales of PC’s for the key Q4 holiday season.

Krzanich told Reuters over the weekend that “I can guarantee for holiday, and not at the last second of holiday.” Broadwell is a significant advancement for Intel, as it will be the first chip to use the Haswell architecture on a 14nm process node and will come with more graphics execution units-on-chip.

The reduced process node means that Broadwell chips will consume much less power thus have a much better battery life. Intel claims that Broadwell will improve battery life by 30 percent or more and will also allow notebooks to be fanless.

But for Intel, shipping Broadwell hasn’t been easy. Moving to the new process node has delayed production, and during Intel’s most recent earnings call Krzanich cited “defect density issue,” which meant that Intel wasn’t getting satisfactory yields — usable chips from a production run — as the reason for its delay. But Intel is under pressure to deliver their chips when the market it at its hottest for the year.

According to DigiTimes, “Intel’s Haswell Refresh processors and 9-series chipset-based motherboards are already available in retail channels worldwide despite Intel still having not yet made an official announcement, according to sources from motherboard players. Intel is expected to announce the launches at the Computex 2014 in early June.”

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