Intel recently unveiled their revised branding structure for their multitude of processors. The new scheme plans to do away with superfluous brand names, and unite their product line into their most popular “hero” brand Intel Core.
The rebranding strategy is designed around the segregating their product lines according to which product is “good” which is “better” and which is the “best”. They will continue with their Celeron and Pentium brands, however other brands will be united under the Intel Core Brand, as i3, i5, or i7 based on the feature set and specifications.
Not quite! According to Intel, i3, i5, and i7 are modifiers to their Core brand, and dont form brands of their own. Intel Core i3 will represent their entry-level products, Core i5 will be mid-level, and Core i7 represents the high-level products regardless of architecture. Their upcoming “Lynfield” chip for example will come in both Core i5 and Core i7 flavors.
Over time they wish to evolve to this new naming convention while phasing out old brand names. One of the casualties of this evolution being their Centrino chipset range, which will be phased out slowly, by first “transitioning” the Centrino brand to their WiFi and WiMAX product offerings.
So let's see what we have here. We have Atom for notebooks and smartbooks, Celeron for “good” computing, Pentium for “better” computing, and there range of Core products for “best” computing. Of course their Core line is again divided into entry-level with Core i3, mid-level with Core i5 and high-level with Core i7. Certainly more structured, but not so much simplified!
For one it is difficult to tell at a glance what will fall in where, however considering that this is a naming structure for products that haven't come out yet it is difficult to see how effective it'll be. As for this evolution, it has already begun, Intel Core i7 processors have been available for quite some time now, and this year we will begin to see some Core i5s, and Core i3 will be available early next year.
With a brand structure built like this it will be easier for people to judge relate merits while buying a computer. The purpose of this structure seems to be simplifying selection by clearly branding products as netry / mid / high level instead on nomenclature like Core 2, Core 2 Duo, Core 2 Quad which is bound to leave some confused. By having a peek at the specification of any computer of tomorrow yuou may be able to ascertain whether it is an entry-level, mid or high, just by seeing if it's driven be an i3, i5, or i7. Till that happens though, we have some confusing times ahead!