What's interesting to me is: how little power does it take to provide basic, yet snappy, PC performance?
yes, same for me.
Scaling down: Will it be Intel x86 based? You can see Intel's direction with what's been shown for Haswell.
- IVB's 17W TDP dual core evolves into Haswell's ~10W.
- Haswell is focusing on power management, with lower idle power, a deeper sleep state and more aggressive movement between states.
For tablet/notebook convergence, x86/64 is mandatory, and Intel is king here. Haswell should bring 8hr life to the likes of Surface Pro and Samsung 700T.
Scaling up: Will it be ARM based and a derivative of the Smartphone space?
Only if Android/iOS apps move way up in scale, and I don't see that happening any time soon. No incentive for app developers.
For 8 hours of runtime:
- 4oz smartphone
- 3/4 lb 8" tablet
- 1.5 lb 10" tablet
- 2.5 lb 13" IVB laptop
Most 13" IVB laptops less than ~3lbs don't make 8 hrs, afaik. More like 6. (based on my readings/experience -- but perhaps you have contrary sources?) Ultrabooks >3.5 lbs make 8 hrs. At the lower weight, the battery just doesn't have enough W/hr yet; or conversely, the hardware still sucks too much juice. Haswell should make 13" 2.5lb laptops hit 8 hrs.
The 14 nm shrink of Haswell -- Broadwell -- 18~24 mos from now should see 10 hr life from x86 1.5 lb 10~12" tablet/notebooks. I look forward to that!