Laptop manufacturers should consider putting 5G and artificial intelligence on their next machines if they want to stay ahead of the game. At least that's what Intel is pushing for in its latest initiative to future-proof laptops, called Project Athena.

The chipmaker wants PC manufacturers to prepare for "a new class of advanced laptops." The push involves, as mentioned, 5G and AI support packaged in sleek-looking ultrabooks.

Artificial Intelligence And 5G

Those two are perhaps the most-used buzzwords in tech these days, and for good reason: AI is getting so good at so many things — it learned how to fire a gun, for instance — that it's getting quite scary. That and the inevitable arrival of 5G in the not-so-distant future, which promises 100 times the maximum speeds of current 4G LTE connections.

As part of Project Athena, Intel will create an annual list of specifications manufacturers need to follow in order to get certified.

Remember Ultrabooks?

If that sounds familiar, it is. Back when ultrabooks weren't still a thing, the industry also adhered to a similar set of standards to create ultra-thin laptops that don't skimp on power and performance. It allowed laptop makers to make their machines thinner, lighter, faster, and have longer battery capacities.

With Ultrabooks, however, it was clear from the get-go what the industry wanted to create. Not so with Project Athena, whose goal remains unclear.

"Designed to enable new experiences and capitalize on next-generation technologies, including 5G and artificial intelligence" is the only description Intel has provided at the moment, which clearly isn't very specific. Exactly what "new experiences" is Intel referring to?

Fortunately, Intel is clear on one thing: AI and 5G are the top priorities for Project Athena. Also, Intel hopes to reduce the time it takes for a user to open the laptop's lid and resume working, but it's not clear how exactly AI and 5G would play into that vision of the future. There are a bunch of other interesting things on the list of goals as well, including all-day battery life, adjustable form factors, and improved performance.

Project Athena Release Date

Intel wants manufacturers to release Project Athena-certified devices as early as the second half of 2019. A lot are already onboard, including Acer, Asus, Dell, Google, HP, Innolux, Lenovo, Microsoft, Samsung, and even Sharp. It doesn't matter if it's a Windows laptop or a Chromebook, either.

Thrilled for Project Athena? Sound off in the comments section below!

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