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Willamette is the code name for Intel’s Pentium 4 (P4) core processor, which was released in 2000. The Willamette was built with NetBurst microarchitecture, which changed how chip processing was handled. In addition to a higher processing frequency, the Willamette had a rapid-execution engine, which reduced latency and handled instructions in a half-clock cycle.
Other enhancements included the following:
These enhancements created faster execution for applications using digital video and voice recognition as well as online gaming.
At the time of release, Willamette’s primary market competitor was AMD’s Athlon processor, which had a 1 GHz clock speed comparable to Intel’s P3.