Intel and Samsung have another new idea for creating a PC: a “sliding” device with a screen that gets much bigger when you pull on the bezel.
Lacking a keyboard, the sliding PC was more like a tablet. But with a screen diagonal ranging from 13 inches to 17 inches, it was more the size of a laptop. Intel Chief Executive Pat Gelsinger and JS Choi, leader of Samsung’s display division, showcased the device Tuesday at Intel Innovation, a conference where the company also introduced Intel’s new 13th-generation Core processors.
A sliding PC device meets the needs of both a large screen and portability, Gelsinger said. It’s a demonstration of what’s possible with OLED display technology built on a flexible plastic substrate.
It’s not clear when or even if the sliding PC idea will grow into a product. But the design shows how the PC industry continues to try out new hardware to go beyond traditional clamshell laptops with a keyboard and screen connected by a hinge. Other examples are laptops whose screen hinges all the way back to convert the device into a tablet and the ThinkPad X1 Fold, with a folding screen.
Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger shows how a “sliding” PC screen can extend from a 13-inch diagonal to a 17-inch diagonal.
Moving parts and flexible components increase the challenges of complexity and reliability. Costs are also rising, a concern in a shrinking PC market. But new designs can find a niche, and premium PCs outperform budget PCs, Michelle Johnston Holthaus, head of Intel’s PC chip group, said at the conference.
Earlier this year, Samsung demonstrated a sliding phone screen along with other new designs.
While the sliding PC prototype didn’t have a keyboard, one could be added as the design matures, for example by expanding from the bottom, Holthaus said.
A close-up of the sliding PC prototype from Intel and Samsung shows some ripples on the left side of the flexible display, the area that curves when the device is pushed back into its shortened configuration.
Stephen Shankland/CNET Welcome, Raptor Lake Processors
At the event, Gelsinger also showcased the new Raptor Lake processors, which are scheduled to hit store shelves on October 20. The processors speed up the CPU cores assigned to high-priority tasks and double the number of CPU cores dedicated to running lower-priority work more efficiently.
The new chips reach new speeds, with a clock ticking as fast as 5.8GHz, but they also consume more power in desktop machines. Expect an improvement in 2023: “Early next year we will bring a ” [model] that takes 6 gigahertz out of the box for the first time ever,” although Intel will only ship it in limited quantities, Gelsinger said.
PC processors are key to Intel’s future, but the company faces fierce competition. AMD has eroded Intel’s dominance, particularly in the high-end gaming PC market, and AMD’s Ryzen 7000 line promises a significant speed boost.
Apple, which has removed Intel from its Mac laptops and desktops in favor of its own M1 and M2 processors, is another challenge for Intel.
“They are a formidable competitor and they have a good role to play. Our goal is to build a part that is just as good,” said Holthaus. “As you see future generations, if you think about performance per watt, we’re going to have products that absolutely compete with Apple.”