Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s we have been observing constant competition between processor manufacturers who strived to offer the highest clock speed or the largest number of processor cores in a single CPU.
Ten years ago Intel presented its first dual core processor for home use. It took the company almost seven years to increase the number of cores in its processors to eight.
Now, Intel unveils its first 10-core processor for home use at the Computex trade show in Taipei. The new processor is exactly for home use as Intel 10-core Xeon processors for professional use are already available.
The 10-core Core i7-6950X by Intel is really stunning. It has 40 PCI Express 3.0 lanes, 25MB of L3 cache, and Hyperthreading, and it does it all within the same 140W TDP as the other processors. The Core i7-6950X also features Intel’s Turbo Boost Max 3.0 tech, which “steers” applications to the highest-performing core, which means that even the programs which don’t know how to use multiple processor cores should be running faster.
The only drawback that can be found while studying the 10-core Core i7-6950X by Intel is the price. Unfortunately, the top processor in Intel’s range sells for $1,723, nearly $700 (£500) more than the 8-core 6900K.
So who does Intel intend its new processor for? Firstly, it will be perfect for virtual reality gaming, be it on the Oculus Rift or the HTC Vive. Those involved in video editing, a task that typically makes good use of multiple processor cores, will also find it useful.
Patrick Moorhead, analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, said: “While Intel has brought many important platform improvements over the past few years, this time Intel has brought double-digit improvements to the chip itself, independent of platform. This should make even the snarkiest reviewer happy. Intel is delivering some really great enthusiast gear for games, VR and extreme multitasking.”
Intel focuses on the Internet of Things
Intel has recently unveiled its intention to develop the Internet of Things direction extensively. The company dismissed 12,000 employees and cut down on unnecessary businesses to focus on the Internet of Things. For Intel, the Internet of Things includes all smart devices connected to the cloud, which means that anything that thing does can be captured as a piece of data, measured in real time, and accessed from anywhere.
Intel states the spread and promotion of the Internet of Things as one of its missions. According to Intel chief executive Brian Krzanich, the great amount of things in IoT and the PC areas – as many as 50 billion of them by 2020 – become much more valuable when connected to the cloud, which Intel wants to target with its data center products.
Doug Davis, senior vice president of Internet of Things at Intel, said: “We think this is going to grow to 50 billion devices and trillions of dollars of economic impact. It will change the way we live and work. As we go out talking, we see more companies investing in it. We are making a transformation from a PC-oriented company to one that powers things that are connected to the cloud and everything necessary to make that happen.”