Today Intel confirmed its sweeping Atom tablet strategy, with the new Oak Trail CPU set to power more than 35 tablets and hybrid device designs, shipping from next month.
With more than 35 tablet designs already on board from a number of manufacturers including Fujitsu, Lenovo, Razer and Australia's Evolve III, Intel's just-released "Oak Trail" CPU, part of the Intel Atom processor lineup, has well and truly hit the ground running.
Intel announced the availability of the new platform overnight in the leadup to this week's Intel Developer Forum in Beijing, confirming that the first Oak Trail devices will start shipping in May. The processor range, which includes the new Intel Atom Z670 CPU, supports booting from multiple OSs, including Android, Windows and MeeGo, and Intel envisages support for a variety of "tablets and hybrid designs that combine the best features of the netbook and tablet together."
Evolve III's Maestro C provides a "Convertible" tablet form factor.
The Z670 puts energy efficiency to the fore, with integrated graphics incorporated alongside the memory controller directly on the processor die. Users can expect improved battery life and enhanced video playback, with 1080p video decoding, HDMI out and Flash support.
Looking beyond the consumer tablet sphere, Intel is also touting Oak Trail's suitability for "small form-factor and portable embedded designs" in retail, industrial and medical environments, be it "mobile clinical assistants" (souped-up medical PDAs) or advanced retail point-of-sale slates.
Evolve III's Maestro S sports 16+ hour battery life when running Android.
In addition to expected launches from a number of vendors, Sydney-based tablet manufacturer Evolve III
will be releasing two Oak Trail tablets at this week's IDF. The company's Maestro S is housed in a conventional tablet form factor and boasts 16+ hour battery life when running Android (10+ with Windows 7). The Maestro C (for "Convertible") provides an example of the "hybrid" designs Intel is spruiking and features a hinge which allows the tablet to stand upright, plus a magnetic keyboard accessory which connects to the display and can additionally be used as a screen protector.