Intel Unveils 'Viiv' Entertainment PC Platform

Don MacDonald, general manager of Intel's Digital Home Platforms Group, introduced Viiv (rhymes with "five") during a speech at the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco.

The platform is slated to include remote-control features, "Quick Resume" technology that would enable a system to boot once and then turn on and off like television set, and an integrated media server with automatic transcoding capability. It also would be able to run Microsoft Windows Media Center Edition; support 5.1 surround sound, with optional support for up to 7.1 surround sound; and have an integrated chipset and controller.

MacDonald noted that the systems would be based on new Intel chip technology. "They will require dual-core processors in all PCs," he said, adding that he expected OEMs to build Viiv-based entertainment PCs in a variety of form factors.

Plans call for the new platform to be available in the first quarter of 2006, when Intel said it expects OEMs to produce the first entertainment PCs based on the new platform.

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MacDonald spoke before several thousand attendees of the twice-annual IDF conference. The Viiv platform marks the Santa Clara, Calif.-based chip giant&'s first branded offering in the digital home arena since it entered that market more than two years ago. It also represents the first watershed product of Intel's Digital Home Platforms Group under the leadership of MacDonald, who took over the unit when it was formed last January.