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Android and Windows 8.1 tablets based on Intel's new Bay Trail platform will be out soon, and visitors to the Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in San Francisco were given a chance to get hands on with early prototypes.
The eight-inch Android and 10.1-inch Windows 8.1 tablets on show promised to deliver around 10 hours of general from a 30 watt-hour battery, as well as better performance than earlier Intel-based tablets thanks to improvements to the processor design and how the Bay Trail system on a chip is manufactured.
Intel Bay Trail is designed to go inside tablets and convertible laptop/tablets priced below $599, and is expected to be used inside tablets ranging down to below $100 in price. For more expensive tablets Intel has the higher priced Haswell Core family of processor, which Intel says should "deliver 2x scalability" beyond Bay Trail for general tasks.
The first Bay Trail tablets will be available to buy during the Christmas holiday season this year.
Here is one of Intel's reference designs for a Bay Trail tablet running the Android Jelly Bean OS, on display at IDF.
The Bay Trail platform gives tablets some three times the graphics performance of earlier Intel Clover Trail-based tablets, and here is another one of the reference design tablets running the Unreal Engine 3D graphics demo, Epic Citadel.
Bay Trail tablets' improved graphics performance comes from an Intel HD GPU, which supports DX11, Open GL 3.0, has four execution units, with eight threads per unit, and can increase its clock speed to 667MHz for limited periods of time.
Here you can see a Windows tablet outputting its display wirelessly to the flatscreen TV at 1080p via Bay Trail's built-in WiDi feature.
Intel also demoed the tablet decoding a 4K resolution movie and outputting it at 1080p to the screen.
Bay Trail's GPU supports full hardware acceleration of video decoding for popular codecs, including H.264, VC1, and MPEG-4/H.263.