First Look At Intel's New VPro Lineup

Intel has unveiled its 2010 Intel Core vPro processor family of products targeting businesses of all sizes. The chip giant's fourth-generation of vPro hardware for desktop and notebook PCs adds performance flexibility, system management capability and a theft prevention toolkit to the popular commercial PC platform.

Intel's new vPro portfolio is based around the chip giant's next-generation 32-nanometer processors, code-named Westmere. These Core i7, i5 and i3 chips integrate high-definition graphics inside the processor and represent the fruit of Intel's $7 billion investment in its manufacturing facilities in 2009. Pictured here is a 32nm mobile processor from Intel code-named Arrandale.

Intel's next-generation mobile Core processors like the Core i5 chip pictured here integrate graphics into the CPU package to free up motherboard real estate in notebook PCs. Computer manufacturers large and small are ready to start shipping vPro-based notebooks this quarter, according to Intel.

Included in the vPro rollout were Intel's latest 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi adapters that provide up to 450 Mbps of bandwidth for demanding applications such as streaming HD videos. Pictured here is the Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6200 adapter.

Intel's 802.11a/b/g/n products are backwards compatible to today's installed base of legacy 802.11a/b/g/n networks, enabling users to connect in more places. Pictured here is the Intel Centrino Ultimate-N 6300 adapter, part of the company's latest lineup of vPro products.

Intel is broadly committed to WiMAX, and compact modules like the Intel Centrino Advanced-N + WiMAX 6250 adapter shown here extend a notebook's broadband connectivity beyond WiFi hotspots, enabling faster download speeds and metro-wide connectivity.

Key technology improvements on the Westmere-class processors that anchor Intel's latest vPro platforms include Turbo Boost and Hyper-Threading. Here, we see an example of the benefits of Turbo Boost, which automatically adjusts core frequencies depending on the workload to give users an immediate performance boost when needed.

One of the coolest new tools on vPro? Intel's new Keyboard-Video-Mouse (KVM) Remote Control (KVM Remote Control) for Core i5 and Core i7 processors, which gives IT administrators and manages service providers full visibility of user displays and full control over the PC -- even if the operating system is inoperative. Another new vPro feature, PC Alarm Clock, can wake a PC from off at a predetermined time to perform maintenance, security and other tasks on its own.

Intel's Anti-Theft Technology is another key capability baked right into the new vPro hardware. In conjunction with software from security vendors like Absolute Software and Phoenix, this technology means businesses can now lock access to an employee's notebook if a central server or built-in intelligence concludes it is lost or stolen.

Top multi-national OEMs with business-class notebooks based on Intel's new vPro hardware include Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo and Toshiba. Pictured here is the Acer Aspire 7740 notebook, a 17.3-inch mobile workstation that looks to be as easy for IT admins to manage as it is a pleasure to operate.

Another feature that will be available on some new vPro-based notebooks from Asus and other OEMs is Intel Switchable Graphics, which automatically switches between low-power integrated graphics hardware and battery-draining discrete graphics depending on what's needed for the task at hand -- a great way to get the high-octane performance you need, when you need it, while saving battery life when you don't.

According to Intel, notebooks with a Core i5 vPro processor can run business productivity applications up to 80 percent faster compared to a three-year-old mainstream notebook. Other tantalizing Intel promises include running multiple applications up to twice as fast and encrypting data up to 3.5 times quicker than you could on those older systems. Germany-based Medion is certainly banking on the appeal of such performance gains as it rolls out its vPro-based Akoya P6622, pictured here.

Intel also has announced the first of its Spring Peak whitebook products for its partner channel. Spring Peak consists of a 13.3-inch ultra-thin notebook platform, a 15.6-inch standard-equipped notebook platform and an exclusive docking station that can handle both products. The two new notebooks are based on Intel's latest Core i3, Core i5 and Core i7 mobile processors, and both are targeted at SMB customers.

Spring Peak products are already set to go from such Intel channel partners as CTL, ASI, Equus and Seneca Data. Here's the 13.3-inch Spring Peak notebook that Portland, Ore.-based CTL will sell under its own 2GO PC brand.