Intel Announces Technology Roadmap, Regaining Its Dominance in the Field by 2025

In the early morning of July 27th, Intel conducted an online live event, revealing Intel's processor roadmap for the next 5 years and new chip and packaging technologies. Intel claims that it will regain its dominant position in the processor field in 2025.

It can be seen from the new roadmap that Intel will no longer adopt the node naming rules that are common in the industry and based on nano-process technology, but will adopt a brand-new naming scheme.

  • Intel 7: The third-generation 10nm chip is renamed to Intel 7 (replacing last year’s enhanced SuperFin), which will provide 10-15% performance per watt. It has been put into mass production and will bring Alder Lake consumer-grade processors and Sapphire Rapids data Central processor.
  • Intel 4: The 7nm node is renamed to Intel 4. Compared to Intel 7, the performance per watt is increased by 20%. EUV lithography technology will be used. The first application products are Meteor Lake and Granite Rapids. Meteor Lake will use Foveros packaging technology to support a TDP range of 5 to 125W, and is expected to be launched at the end of 2022.
  • Intel 3: The Intel 3 node is expected to be unveiled in the second half of 2023. It is expected to be an upgraded application of the Intel 4 7nm process. Compared with Intel 4, the performance per watt is improved by about 18%. Although it is not stated clearly, it is expected that it will not be marketed until 2024 at the earliest.

In short, the 10nm ESF was renamed Intel 7, the 7nm was renamed Intel 4, and the 7nm enhanced version was renamed Intel 3.

In addition, Intel has named the next-generation technology chip Intel 20A.

This A represents the unit "Angström" (Ångström, abbreviated as Angstrom, symbol Å), which is 0.1nm, and 20A is 2nm. This is Intel's first official announcement of a new transistor architecture since the FinFET was launched in 2011. It is called "RibbonFET". This is Intel's first gate-around transistor architecture (GAA), which will bring higher transistor integration density and smaller chip size.

At the same time, 20A will introduce Intel’s unique "PowerVia" technology, which will allow power to be obtained from the back of the chip, avoiding the previous front-side power supply wiring requirements of the wafer to optimize signal transmission.

The farthest visible roadmap is Intel 18A, which will adopt the second-generation RibbonFET technology, and the node will be developed in early 2025. This is also the time when Intel claims to regain its dominant position in the industry.

Intel's IFS foundry business also officially announced a new customer, that is Qualcomm. Qualcomm will rely on the Intel 20A technology node in the future, and plans to manufacture new Qualcomm chips based on Intel 20A foundry technology starting in 2024. In addition, Amazon will also become another important customer of Intel's foundry business.

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