At the start of September Intel took the wraps off its attractive new 11th Gen Core mobile processors with Iris Xe graphics at its Tiger Lake Virtual Launch Event. Casting a beady eye over the new TGL processors, we observed that Intel's initial salvo of products (five 'UP3' 12-28W parts, and four 'UP4' 7-15W parts) didn't match AMD's latest offerings in their target market - with regard to core-and-thread counts. In other words the new TGL processor lineup offered up to 4C/8T, while AMD's newest chips targeting the same market could offer up to 8C/16T.
Intel didn't provide any hint about higher core count TGL processors coming later during its presentation. However, it has been noticed that Intel's Boyd Phelps confirmed in a Medium blog post a day or two later, that the company has octa-core TGL processors in the pipeline. A quick reminder: TGL's star attractions are its 10nm SuperFin architecture, Willow Cove CPU cores, and Iris Xe-LP integrated graphics.
"The Willow Cove core increases the mid-level cache to 1.25MB—up from 512KB," Phelps wrote, on Medium. "We also added a 3MB non-inclusive last-level-cache (LLC) per core slice. A single core workload has access to 12MB of LLC in the 4-core die or up to 24MB in the 8-core die configuration (more detail on 8-core products at a later date)."
Intel's lineup of 4C/8T TGL chips were already seemingly competitive with AMD's eight-core Renoir (7nm Zen 2 plus Vega) mobile chips in some performance benchmarks (even gaming), but creating some further octa-core SKUs will help Intel's prospects in selling into markets which benefit strongly from the higher CPU core counts. For reference, HEXUS recently reviewed a Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 (AMD Ryzen 7 4800U) laptop.
Meanwhile we are still waiting for the laptops, AiOs and SFF PCs featuring 11th Gen Core mobile processors with Iris Xe graphics to become available for review (even in their present 2C/4T or 4C/8T forms). Earlier in the month we saw Samsung launch the Galaxy Book Flex 5G 'Intel Evo' laptop but it is yet to become available, which is also the came for machines we know of from the likes of Acer, Asus, Dynabook and Lenovo. Depending upon the Intel partner TGL laptops are said to be hitting retail in October and November this year.