With Cedar Trail just hitting the limelight, we now have a leaked slide from Intel, which shows their roadmap till 2014. Somewhere in 2013, Intel will be launching the Atom processor beyond its dual-core limit with a quad-core offering. The legend in the image is a bit difficult to read, but the ‘Q’ in the first red blob stands for a quad-core SKU. The chips will most likely be targeted at micro-servers, but we could expect to see them in netbooks and nettops as well.
The quad-core chip will support ECC memory configurations for servers, along with other improvements. These will belong to a new range of ULV (Ultra Low Voltage) processors, codenamed ‘Saltwell’. Presumably, these chips would also support multithreading giving you a total of eight threads, which should provide quite a significant boost in performance over the current range of Atom processors. We will no doubt see similar offerings from AMD as well as APUs mature. If we’re lucky, we might catch a glimpse of some prototypes at CES, although it does seem unlikely.