It's been a slow year for laptop chips, but Intel is about to make things very interesting in the upcoming year. The mobile Core i7s, rolled out at this week's Intel Developers' Forum, will find their way into the latest gaming and high-end multimedia laptops. Here are 10 things you should know about them:

1. Hyper-Threading Arrives: This was first introduced four years ago in the Intel Pentium 4s for desktops, but never made it in as a mobile part. This latest batch of Core i7s has four physical cores, with two threads per core. The operating system recognizes it as 8 cores.

2. L3 Cache: A huge L3 Cache is a first for mobile processors, and it'll play a significant role in communicating with the built-in memory controller, as well as speed up processes. The new Core i7s will have a shared L3 cache that range between 6MB to 8MB

3. Goodbye NorthBridge: Getting rid of a physical chip that housed the memory and graphics controllers means a speedier system, smaller motherboard form factors, and sleeker designs in the future.

4. DDR3 Memory Only: The mobile Core i7s mark the end of DDR2 memory for Intel mobile chips. Their dual-channel memory controller can support DDR3 memory speeds of up to 1333MHz.

5. 16GB of Memory: PC makers can add up to 4 memory slots on the latest Core i7 motherboards, which mean the latter can support up to 16GB of DDR3 memory.

6. Turbo Boost: It's like an energy drink for lightly-threaded processes. Inactive cores lend their power to active ones and require no customization from the user.

7. High Performance First: This batch of Core i7s does not target commuters and long battery life seekers. They target gamers and high-end users instead, and could have decent battery life provided they come with a huge battery. Later on, the mainstream Core i7s and Core i5s (codenamed Arrandale) will focus on battery efficiency and thinner form factors.

8. SouthBridge Gets A Makeover: The Intel PM55 Express chipset holds the key to future motherboard designs. It will support more internal and external peripherals than the previous Intel G45 chipset, and will be the platform for the mainstream Core i7s and Core i5s.

9. Frugal Gamers, Rejoice: These systems are not only fast, but they're inexpensive, too. Upcoming laptops with Core i7 will easily come in under $2,000.

10. SLI and CrossFire Support: For those seeking the ultimate gaming experience, Core i7 laptops can support dual graphics chipsets using Nvidia's SLI or ATI's CrossFire technology at the processor die, something the previous generation of Intel mobile CPUs couldn't do.