Intel’s Pentium 4-M CPU came to market in the spring of 2002 at a clock frequency of up to 1.7GHz. The CPU’s Micro FCPGA packaging technology results in the CPU using less power in both the performance and battery optimised modes, making it run cooler and thereby allowing the processor to fit into smaller notebook form factors.

On the average a Mobile Pentium 4-M chip uses two watts of power. It achieves this by dropping to an operating voltage of less than 1V whenever possible and ramping up to its maximum 1.3V only when peak performance is necessary. This real-time dynamic switching of voltage levels is one of the techniques by which battery life is extended. Another is the dynamic power management’s Deeper Sleep Alert State which allows further power savings to be made during periods of inactivity – which can be as brief as microseconds between key strokes.

With Tualatin-based Pentium III-M and Mobile Celeron CPUs offering a wide range of price/performance points across the entire range of notebook form factors and Intel, announced that it expected its next generation Mobile Pentium 4 processor – codenamed Banias and released early 2003 – to become the mainstay in the notebook sector going forward.

Billed as Intel’s first chip designed from the ground up to power notebooks, Banias – named after an archaeological site in the Middle East – was fundamentally different from other Intel notebook chips, having an architecture that is distinct from that of desktop CPUs and that is designed to support more power conservation features than previous generations of mobile chips.

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