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Intel intros 'Ice Lake' 10th-generation Core processors, possibly for MacBook rebirth

Intel on Thursday unveiled its first batch of 10th-generation Core processors, dubbed "Ice Lake," offering a glimpse at the options Apple will have in future MacBooks.

Intel Ice Lake



The 10-nanometer laptop chips are designed for better board integration, and in fact include native support for technologies like Wi-Fi 6 and Thunderbolt 3. That should allow them to keep up with Apple's demands for growing performance in compact systems like the MacBook Air.

The initial batch includes 11 chips in total, split between U- and lower-end Y-series processors. At the bottom of the list is the Y-series Core i3 1000G1, a 1.1-gigahertz dual-core chip with UHD Graphics, a 4-megabyte cache, and Turbo speeds up to 3.2 gigahertz.

At the peak is the U-series Core i7-1068G7, a quad-core unit with an 8-megabyte cache and 2.3-gigahertz base speed, able to ramp up to 3.6 gigahertz across all cores. Single-core boosts can reach 4.1 gigahertz.

Intel Ice Lake chart



Intel's new incarnation of Iris Plus is said to offer "double the graphics performance," good enough for 1080p gaming and 4K video editing. The GPU is also Intel's first to support VESA Adaptive Sync, and purportedly the first integrated option anywhere with variable rate shading.

The company is switching to a new naming scheme as well, seen below.

Intel Ice Lake naming scheme



Apple has already updated the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air this year, but is rumored to be preparing a 16-inch Pro for launch in October. That computer may effectively replace the 17-inch Pro, which was discontinued in 2012.