The performance gains found in the new processors are due in part to the groundbreaking, three-dimensional structure of the new Intel transistors. Until today, computers, servers and other devices have used only two-dimensional planar transistors. Adding a third dimension to transistors allows Intel to increase transistor density and put more capabilities into every square millimeter of these new processors. Intel has once again re-invented the transistor and delivered an unprecedented combination of performance and energy efficiency, thus sustaining the pace of technology advancement and fueling Moore’s Law for years to come.
Intel engineers also reworked the graphics architecture of the 3rd generation Intel Core processors, helping to deliver dramatic improvements in the overall visual experience. Changing the chips’ architecture while at the same time shrinking the size of the underlying transistors is an acceleration of Intel’s “tick-tock” model. Previously, the company adhered to a strict “tick-tock” model in which a new manufacturing process was introduced in 1 year (the “tick”), and the architecture of the chip (the “tock”) was altered the next. The ability to accelerate the roadmap and change both the chips’ architecture and the manufacturing process at the same time was made possible because Intel is one of the few companies that both designs and manufactures its chips, a method called Integrated Device Manufacturing.