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Ultrathin laptops may undergo a revolution thanks to Intel Lunar Lake CPUs

The still-future Lunar Lake CPUs from Intel will be designed for ultra-thin laptops, with the intention of giving such narrow devices sufficient power to compensate for their reduced size.

According to tweets by Ian Cutress, who cites a conversation he had with Intel’s VP and GM of Client Computing Michelle Johnston Holthaus, Lunar Lake will be a reimagining of the processor from the bottom up, with an entirely new architecture developed with performance per watt in mind.

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With its low power consumption and high performance, Lunar Lake chips are a natural fit for portable devices (relatively speaking). Word on the street has it that these processors will hit the market in late 2024 or early 2025.

According to Cutress, we may expect to hear more about the topic from Intel later this month, when the company reports its financial results on January 26. Keep an ear out, since it won’t be long until we learn more about the specific features that Lunar Lake CPUs will provide.

The energy efficiency Intel has been emphasising is great for mobile, but what about powerful desktop CPUs?

As we know, efficiency will be a major feature in Intel’s next-generation Meteor Lake architecture, so the company’s apparent emphasis on it is not surprising.

Intel has already made significant strides in this direction with its current Raptor Lake CPUs and is projected to make much more progress with its 14th-generation range of chips. The rumour mill suggests that Meteor Lake will have even more efficiency cores; they are low-power cores that use little energy but may significantly improve multi-core performance. Plus, Meteor Lake will provide a whole new architecture for efficiency cores on top, which should have significant effects on power efficiency.

Based on what has been said, Lunar Lake may make even more progress; the language is rather strong on the efficiency of these CPUs when applied to mobile devices. Is it possible that this means Lunar Lake will only be available in laptop CPUs? Cutress doesn’t say anything about it, but it’s reasonable to assume that it is.

After all, next-gen Meteor Lake seems to be heavily skewed toward mobile performance, with speculations suggesting that the maximum performance core count for the 14th generation may be limited to 6 owing to a large push for additional efficiency cores. (Remember, the top-end Raptor Lake Core i9 and i7 CPUs feature 8 performance cores, and the same was true of Alder Lake – so removing these cores would be a letdown on the desktop front.)

Since it seems like both Meteor Lake and Lunar Lake will focus on efficiency, it appears that the 15th-generation family, Arrow Lake, will be the only chance for those hoping for a new powerful desktop (Core i9) processor in the near future.

Take this with a grain of salt since it is only conjecture, and stay tuned for Intel’s next (full year) fiscal figures and comments later in January, when we could learn more about how Lunar Lake will be positioned in laptops and desktops.