New Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 tablet to use Intel Atom CPU

atominsideIt looks as though Intel has managed to get a seat at the Samsung Galaxy Tab banquet with news that the chip giant will supply one of its Atom CPUs for a next-generation Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 tablet.

The report in EE Times said that the CPU will be one of the older Clover Trail-class chips, built on a 32-nanometre processor and not the soon-t0-be-released 22nm Bay Trail models.

The chip giant has struggled to get a foothold in the lucrative tablet market, so far dominated by CPU variants developed by rival ARM Holdings. Word is the Intel win was based on more favourable pricing, which won’t hurt given the expanding competition that is forcing prices down globally.

According to the Korean Times, Intel has beefed up its engineer count in Korea from 6 to 50, further evidence of Intel’s desire to push into the tablet market. Reports are that engineers are working to enable customers to customise Atom designs to better fit their products.

But with ARM dominating the market, it’s unlikely we’ll see Samsung drop everything for Intel just yet.

Competition in the budget tablet CPU market (including 7-inch models) is fierce with Intel battling against brands like RockChip and Allwinner, which are doing a roaring trade in China.

At this stage, there is no word on which operating system the Intel-powered Galaxy Tab 3 will be running, but given Windows 8 doesn’t run particularly well on Clover Trail Atom devices, it’s most likely to be Android. We’ll know on June 20 when the devices are launched.

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