Intel and challenger ARM are set for a PC showdown this week as competition heats up to redefine the laptop and reverse the sagging fortunes of the PC market. Intel this week at its Intel Developer Forum developer show will provide further details on the rollout of ultrabooks, which have been described as thin and light PCs with tablet-like features. The chip maker is also expected to talk up Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 OS at the show, which will be held in San Francisco Tuesday through Thursday.
Meanwhile, Nvidia and Texas Instruments will be present at Microsoft's BUILD conference -- held in Anaheim, California, Tuesday through Friday -- to drum up support for Windows 8 on their chips, which carry ARM processors. Nvidia and TI have said they would put the ARM-based chips in laptops in an attempt to take PC market share away from Intel.
Intel is pushing ultrabooks to rejuvenate interest in PCs, whose shipments have slowed due in part to growing interest in tablets. ARM-based chip makers believe the power-efficient processors can be extended to laptops running Windows 8. Microsoft has extended Windows 8 support beyond x86 to ARM processors, and an Nvidia spokesman said that the upcoming OS will work on tablets and PCs with its upcoming quad-core Kal El chip, which is due to reach devices later this year.