Intel announced its latest 8th generation Core processors and is promising that the new chips will offer up to a 40 percent speed boost over the previous 7th generation Kaby Lake chips.
The 8th generation chips will be doing things a little differently from other generations. In the past, Intel has either used generational steps for introducing new chip architectures (say, the jump from 22nm to 14nm between Haswell and Broadwell) or to offer an improved version of the previous generation’s architecture (like Skylake, which was an upgraded version of the 14nm node).
The 8th generation chips, for the first time in the Core line will be doing a mixture of both. Getting announced today is a refreshed version of the Kaby Lake architecture that makes up the seventh generation processors (built on the 14nm+ technology node), but later releases in the eight generation will offer the upcoming 14++ (Coffee Lake) and 10nm (Cannon Lake) technologies, too.
But for now, Intel is focusing its news today on a pretty narrow slice of its 8th generation line: two new Core i7 chips, and two new i5 chips, both in the company’s U Series of laptop processors. But while the internal architecture may resemble the existing 7th gen Kaby Lake lineup, there’s some significant speed improvements compared to the last generation of up to 40 percent. Intel says that improvement is largely due to the new chips all getting two extra cores, with all four 8th-gen models offer four cores / eight threads. Additionally, the company says its made improvements to the design and manufacturing process to further improve speed.
The new chips are also designed to handle things like 4K video, VR, 3D, and other recent innovations on a platform-wide level. The integrated HD 620 graphics built into the last generation of U Series processors is also getting rebranded to reflect that change in focus as UHD 620 graphics. The new name is largely cosmetic, though, given that the integrated GPU remains unchanged from the previous model — the improvements in performance are focused on the CPU instead.