Quad-Core 13-Inch MacBook Pro Likely, Windows 10 Laptops Coming – Forbes

Apple 13.3-inch MacBook Pro.Credit: Apple

Apple 13.3-inch MacBook Pro. A quad-core 13-inch MacBook Pro would be a first.

Intel is set to deliver powerful quad-core processors that will land in smaller mainstream laptops.

To date, top-tier computer makers like Hewlett-Packard-Packard, Dell and Apple have used Intel quad “Core” brand* processors typically in larger, pricey laptops targeted at professionals and gamers.

Apple, for example, uses Intel’s latest mobile Kaby Lake quad-core chips only in its biggest laptop, the 15.4-inch MacBook Pro, which starts at a whopping $2,399. HP typically offers Core QC (quad core) in large laptops as does Dell. Small, 13-inch-class laptops have been almost uniformly limited to Intel dual-core processors.

But that’s about to change with Intel’s 8th Generation Core processors. Dell has given us the best example so far. At the IFA tech conference in Berlin, Dell announced that its popular XPS 13 will get an 8th Gen quad-core processor. This is the first time for Dell to offer quad-core in its super-svelte 13-inch laptop line, which, to date, has used only Intel power-frugal U series dual-core.

The XPS 13 now offers up to 44% more performance with the latest 8th Generation Intel Core i7 processors and Dynamic Power Mode…with four cores versus two, experiencing exceptional performance while multi-tasking and running multiple applications is possible.

–Dell

Dell XPS 13. The first XPS 13 with a quad-core processor.Credit: Dell

Dell XPS 13. The first XPS 13 with a quad-core processor.

Microsoft Surface rival Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 520 is now quad core too, starting at $1,000.

Why quad-core now?

Why? Simple. To date, shoehorning a Core QC into a 13-inch thin-and-light design has not been feasible because of the power envelope (so-called Thermal Design Power or TDP) and battery life downsides.

“It’s only possible because Intel is pressing a Core-series QC into a ‘U’ power range (15W average),” Dell told me. “Moving it from dual to quad was new…and we’re expecting more than 145 designs with these processors,” an Intel spokesperson said.

Apple MacBooks

It’s a pretty safe bet that Apple will follow suit with a 13-inch MacBook Pro packing a quad-core 8th Generation processor, as pointed out by MacRumors. One of the most critical metrics for Apple is battery life and Intel is saying that 10 hours is possible with 8th Generation quad core.

Big jump in performance

The rollout of the 8th gen processors will begin with mobile processors “designed specifically for sleek thin and light notebooks and 2 in 1s,” said Intel’s Gregory Bryant, a senior vice president and general manager of the Client Computing Group, in a prepared statement. “This new mobile family sets the bar for outstanding performance, including a boost of up to 40 percent” over the previous generation of processors.

Laptops with 8th Gen quad core should begin appearing in September.

HP Spectre x360 (15-inch): HP has already upgraded this to Intel 8th Gen quad core. It was being offered as a dual-core laptop.Credit: Hewlett-Packard

HP Spectre x360 (15-inch): HP has already upgraded this to Intel 8th Gen quad core. It was being offered as a dual-core laptop.

*Core brand as opposed to, for example, Pentium or Atom, which are typically much less powerful

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