Intel have recently demonstrated a future generation architecture codenames Haswell and personally it sounds like one of the most important advances in years, assuming it isn’t just marketing BS, and it should be out by 2013!
Intel’s Haswell has been developed using a 22-nanometer 3D-Haswell architecture that apparently will consume so little power that it can possibly be run on a solar cell (in standby), which is about 20 times less energy than current technology.
This apparently could allow for a notebook to be in sleep mode for 10 days at the same time it is still connected to the internet allowing it to fetch emails, check twitter etc). A single charge should also allow the notebook to work for 24 hours ours.
It certainly sounds like it could be a lot of BS but it is worth noting that this leap ahead in terms of power consumption is due to the movement from traditional 2D planar transistors to the new 3D transistor (Tri-Gate transistor) Intel recently announced. The flat two-dimensional "planar" gate is replaced with a thin three-dimensional silicon fin that rises up vertically from the silicon substrate. The gate wraps around the fin and then the current is controlled by using a gate on each of the three sides of the fin–two on each side and one across the top–rather than just one on top, as is the case with the 2D planar transistor.
According to Intel “The additional control enables as much transistor current flowing as possible when the transistor is in the ‘on’ state (for performance), and as close to zero as possible when it is in the ‘off’ state (to minimize power), and enables the transistor to switch very quickly between the two states (again, for performance)."Haswell, Intel