Exit, stage left? In a bit of a surprising move, Intel has just discontinued the processor that powered the Surface Neo. You know, Lakefield, which was a hybrid chip meant for thin and light devices.
Manufacturers will now have to look elsewhere for alternatives.
As reported, the discontinuation of Lakefield could spell changes not for the devices that made use of it, like the stylistically impressive Lenovo X1 Fold and the Surface Neo — assuming that Microsoft ever gets around to shipping it.
This change is completely out of the blue.
The chips were announced in January 2019, with devices powered by this new platform only making their way out in June 2020. Not many did, however, as most hardware vendors seem to have taken a wait and see approach with Lakefield.
And this is not all that surprising, when you consider the performance bracket these chips fell in.
In simpler terms, Lakefield offered performance level more comparable to the budget Intel Atom cores and nowhere near something like the Skylake products. Their primary selling point was that these were made to have a small footprint, which allowed them to fit into exceptionally thin devices.
You know, like the Galaxy Book S, which is a fine, fine creation.
This unexpected change that will also have an effect on Windows 11, as this was a category of devices that the new operating system was targeting.
Alternatives to the Lakefield platform will now have to come either in the form of a new CPU from Qualcomm or another processor from Intel that will take aim at this side of the market.