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Intel Unveils Power-Saving Mobile Processor

Intel today introduced its newest generation of mobile Pentium III processors, which include a new technology called SpeedStep that allows the chips to run close to desktop-PC processor speeds, while also extending battery life.

The SpeedStep technology reduces by 50 percent the power requirements of the just-released Pentium III 600Mhz and 650Mhz mobile processors, said Russell Barck, Intel’s director of worldwide market development.

SpeedStep’s primary method of power saving is to reduce the chip’s clock speed to 500Mhz and lower the voltage level being used when the notebook is running on batteries and then boost it back up to 600Mhz or 650Mhz when the notebook is on AC power. The level of power savings can be managed automatically by the computer or the end user via a desktop icon. In manual mode the end user can override SpeedStep allowing the processor to work at full capacity, but this shortens battery life.