The October 1999 announcement of a range of 0.18-micron Pentium III processors included the launch of the first mobile Pentium IIIs. The new processors – available at speeds of 400MHz, 450MHz and 500MHz and featuring a 100MHz system bus – represented a significant performance boost of up to 100% over Intel’s previous fastest mobile CPU.
All mobile processors consume less power than their desktop counterparts, are significantly smaller in size and incorporate sophisticated power management features. The smallest processor package of the day – the BGA – is about the size of a postage stamp and the 400MHz processor – operating at an extremely low 1.35V – was targeted specifically at mini notebook designs.
Mid-2001 saw an important step in the evolution of Intel’s family of mobile CPUs, with the introduction of the Pentium III-M processor, based on Intel’s new 0.13-micron Pentium III core known internally as the Tualatin. By this time the introduction of new CPU technologies and manufacturing processes in low volume markets first, and only later – after sufficient time to perfect the associated technologies – adapting them to mass production segments, had become a well-established practice. The Tualatin was a further case in point even though – by the time of its much delayed appearance – deployment in the mobile arena was its primary purpose.
By the spring of 2002 a wide range of Tualatin-based Pentium III-M CPUs were available. The spectrum of core voltages accommodated was between 1.1V and 1.4V at clock frequencies of up to 1.2GHz for standard voltage versions and 866MHz and 766MHz for low voltage and ultra low voltage versions respectively.