Intel’s New Core Chips Could Power 20% Thinner MacBook Airs For 13 Hours [CES 2013]

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CES 2013 bug LAS VEGAS, CES 2013 – There was a lot of nonsense being spouted at Intel’s presser today here in Las Vegas, but what isn’t nonsense is their next-generation Core chip technology, which could make a 20% lighter and thinner MacBook Air with 13-hour battery life a reality by the end of the year, or a Retina MacBook Pro with nine hours battery life. Wow.

Intel was caught with their pants down a few years ago when the priority in computing shifted from pure processing power, where Intel was unmatched, to mobile friendly chips that can take you through the better part of the day on a single charge.

Intel’s been playing catch-up ever since after being strongly rebuked by Apple for the power consumption of their chips, but today, Intel announced some chips that should make even Apple happy.

First, in the existing generation of Core processors, Intel has a few new chips that are a good match for ultrabooks that sip just 7 watts of power. Considering the current i5 processor in the MacBook Air actually sucks up 17 watts of power, that’s a massive savings: the MacBook Air next-generation could have the same battery life of your iPad. Wow.

Intel didn’t give clockspeed for these new 7W cores, though, so they may very well not be suitable for the MacBook Air. The good news, however, is that Intel’s also got the fourth-gen Core processors coming, and they expect that these processors will give nine hours of battery life to even more powerful machines.

In other words, it’s looking like a good year for Mac notebooks. MacBook Pros could get nine-hour battery life thanks to the fourth-generation Cores, while the MacBook Air could get Intel’s new 7W chips and last even longer. That’s rad news for anyone.

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John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his wife and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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