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Intel VP: Ivy Bridge processor is built for ‘Retina display’ computers

At the Intel Developer Forum that took place yesterday, Intel’s Vice President and General Manager of the PC Client Group Kirk Skaugen revealed (14:30 mark) that Intel’s upcoming Ivy Bridge Processor is built for Retina display computers, “if OEMs choose to use it.”

“Retina display” is a marketing term coined by Apple to describe a screen where one cannot discern pixels at an average usage distance with 20/20 vision. It is curious that Intel’s VP used an Apple term to describe high-density computer displays for the broader market.

Apple is set to use Intel’s Ivy Bridge processor in its next line Macs, making it an opportune time to introduce its Retina display technology into the Mac line. The Ivy Bridge processor, without help from discrete graphics processors, can power 2560-by-1600 displays (as Skaugen said), which is four times the current resolution found in the 13-inch MacBook Pro. That would look pretty good on 13-inch displays of Apple’s Pro/Air.

Apple’s bigger, high-end notebooks have typically had help from discrete graphics processors. To make bigger displays “Retina,” Apple would likely need to add more GPU processing power.

According to new reports today, the Ivy Bridge processor is set to launch by the end of this month. With the launch of Ivy Bridge, the timeline for new Macs looks to be shortly thereafter. There were several clues found in OS X Mountain Lion that point to Apple introducing Retina graphics. Apple was also rumored to launch a thinner MacBook Pro and 15-inch MacBook Air later this summer.

You can watch Skaugen’s comment at the 14:30 mark.

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