Intel has recently developed technology that seems to be years ahead of time. This time it is a solar-powered microprocessor, code-named Claremont, with a low-energy mode of less than 10 milli-watts, that allows for applications to be constantly running.
According to Intel, the purpose of the Claremont processor is to achieve unparalleled energy efficiency. Most embedded chips operate at nominal voltage of about 1V today. Claremont, dubbed the "Near threshold voltage" processor, can function at around 400-500 millivolts. “Threshold” voltage is the point at which transistors turn on and begin to conduct current. It is challenging to run electronics reliably at such voltage levels.
As of yet Intel has not decided whether or not to produce the Claremont. However, it is exciting because it could open the door to a whole new generation of computing technology. With technology like this you have been claims of boasting 10 times the computing power and cutting power consumption by 1/10. With these types of power demands, future mobile devices could be run on solar power, wirelessenergy harvesting, sound, or even off the heat in one's own pocket.
Can't wait to have a tablet that is powered off the energy of me touching it
It's rather amazing though if it uses 500mV logic, then the margin for high and low levels must be very sensitive. I guess this is only viable for internal core functioning and not interfacing circuitry?