Intel is set to come under pressure from Qualcomm who says that it has signed up 15 computer makers including Acer, LG and Samsung to produce so-called “smartbooks” using its Snapdragon processor, and expects the first models to hit the market in Q4.
The emerging new category of smartbooks are small computers about the size of smaller netbooks, but usually powered either by the Snapdragon chip or Nvidia’s graphics-rich Tegra.
Most are always-on, always-connected low-power devices with long battery life. They don’t run Windows and depend on Web-based applications like Google Apps.
First Snapdragon models will start selling next quarter, CEO Paul Jacobs told the Bloomberg news service.
Consumers want computers that will run all day on one battery charge and don’t need to be switched off and are always receiving data, said Jacobs.
“People don’t like carrying around a laptop and their charger,” said Jacobs.
“They certainly don’t like the time it takes to open up your laptop, get online and finally download your first e-mail 15 minutes later.”