Intel has released the details of its fifth-generation vPro processor. Now we know what you’re thinking: Wasn’t that already released? That’s true, but vPro targets enterprise users and offers extras not found on all Intel chips.
Two new features highlight this edition of vPro. First up is Pro Wireless Display. While Wireless Display is not new, the Pro version offers several unique functions including secure video connections and a “privacy screen” to protect secure information during meetings. Intel says the vPro version also has advanced configuration options that will help IT departments set up Wireless Display in an office with heavy Wi-Fi traffic.
The second, more interesting addition is Intel Wireless Docking, which acts as an automatic wire-free docking solution for mice, keyboards and other USB accessories. Intel says this solution can eliminate the need for mechanical docks entirely. While that won’t excite home users, it’ll certainly be a boon to businesses, which up until now have been forced to invest in legions of docks that work only with a handful of laptops and cost up to several hundred dollars each.
Intel’s vPro line also continues to offer previous technologies like Intel Identity Protection, which is gaining support for multi-factor authentication, and Intel Active Management. The company says these enable “workplace transformations that can result in hundreds of billions of dollars productivity enhancements.” That’s probably not true for the pizza shop down the street, but it’s easy to see why big corporate buyers prefer vPro hardware.
The launch of 5th-gen vPro comes with a new product lineup, and there are several changes to note. On the affordable end of the spectrum there’s a series of five Core i3 processors that fully support vPro technology. The previous generation did not include any Core i3 models with vPro. The product lineup even includes two Celerons and one Pentium.