Intel says Broadwell processors will be available for holiday PC shopping

CEO Brian Krzanich said the company's new chips probably won't be shipping in time for the important back-to-school season.
Written by Sean Portnoy, Contributor

Intel's latest PC chips, code-named Broadwell, have been a long time coming — and apparently we'll be waiting a little longer for them, according to recent comments from the company's CEO.

Brian Krzanich told Reuters over the weekend that the new processors, which will be built using the 14nm manufacturing process, should start shipping in new computers by the holiday shopping season. That timeline is a little more specific than the "second half of 2014" guidance we've been receiving from the chip giant, even if it's later than hoped for.

The good news is that the Broadwell rollout could boost end-of-year PC sales, but it might mark a blow for back-to-school shopping, especially if consumers decide to hold off making purchases while waiting for Intel's latest and greatest to arrive.

The delay can be partially blamed on manufacturing issues with the 14nm technology that were disclosed late last year. As with previous generations, shrinking the processor size should allow for performance gains and reduction in power usage; Broadwell is expected to use about 30 percent less power compared to 22nm Haswell processors (see size comparison in photo above). Higher-end Broadwell CPUs are purportedly including the latest iteration of Intel's Iris Pro integrated graphics with a rumored 80-percent performance improvement over Haswell's integrated graphics.

As a stopgap measure before Broadwell launches, Intel has recently introduced a pair of new chipsets to go along with refreshed Haswell processors.

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