Intel is ending its Gemini Lake budget CPUs (but you probably won’t miss them)

(Image credit: / Alexander Tolstykh)

Intel’s Gemini Lake processors are officially being retired, with the chipmaker giving deadlines for final orders and shipments for manufacturers.

If you’re not familiar with the Gemini Lake family, these are budget CPUs of the low-powered variety which are often found in the likes of wallet-friendly laptops, which were first introduced in December 2017. They consist of Pentium and lower-end Celeron models, with quad-core variants of both, and dual-core in the case of the Celerons.

When we say low-power we mean 6W to 10W, so these are very frugal pieces of silicon in terms of power consumption, and as you’d expect the clock speeds are pretty conservative – the range-topping Pentium Silver J5005 is the fastest performer with a base clock of 1.5GHz and boost to 2.8GHz. So buyers of devices powered by these certainly don’t expect blistering performance.

Refreshing change

There is no cause for concern when it comes to manufacturers equipping budget notebooks or tablets (or possibly the likes of mini PCs), mind you, because Intel has replaced these offerings with Gemini Lake Refresh chips, which were introduced late in 2019 (and while offering no increase in core counts, they were boosted to hit up to 3.2GHz Turbo).

As Tom’s Hardware reports, the Pentium flavors of Gemini Lake will be the first to vanish, with Intel ceasing to take orders on October 23, 2020 (the last shipment will leave Intel’s warehouses on April 2, 2021).

Celeron models will last a little longer with the deadline for final orders being January 22, 2021 (shipping by July 9, 2021). So over the course of 2021, we can expect hardware powered by these Gemini Lake chips to slowly disappear.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).