(1) x86 primarily means definition #2 below; however, the term may also refer to 32-bits when contrasting 32-bit with 64-bit hardware for Windows PCs (see x64). See Program Files x86.

(2) The world's predominant hardware platform for laptops, desktops and servers. The x86 line was developed by Intel and includes the Core, Xeon, Pentium, Atom and original 8086 family (hence the "86"). With an even greater market share than x86, ARM is the hardware platform for mobile devices and appliances (see ARM).

AMD also manufactures x86 CPUs with brands such as Athlon, Sempron and Opteron. Although Intel and AMD are primary sources, x86 chips are also made by others. See x86 compatible, x86 chip platform and embedded system.

x86 Lineage and Branding
The x86 architecture stems from Intel's 8088 CPU in 1979, the heart of the original IBM PC in 1981. The 8088 was a slower version of the 8086, which begat the 80186, 286, 386, 486, Pentium and subsequent processor families. See 8088, Pentium, Intel Core and x64.

References in periodicals archive ?
Then, in Section III-B we describe a new automatic scheme to evade anti-debugging techniques in 80x86 environments.
Introduction to 80X86 Assembly Language and Computer Architecture, 3rd Edition
Detmer (Middle Tennessee State U.) offers a supplemental text to instructors who want to give students hands-on experience with the Intel 80x86 architecture or use the book as a stand-alone text for an assembly language course.
The ECSP has reportedly been proven to work on the Freescale MPC750 PowerPC boards and the Intel 80x86 architectures.
Written for experienced programmers, the book provides an overview of 80x86 and PowerPC assembly language.
(Includes CD-ROM.) A nice introduction to real-time operating systems using examples on 80X86 processors.
Intel used the strategy of trying to convince users that the trend in its 80X86 semiconductor technology would be to close the price/performance gap between CISC and RISC in the near future, while retaining software compatibility (Molina 1993).
The fact that hardware evolves is perhaps not surprising in and of itself, after all, the Intel 80x86 "species" evolved from a mere 29,000 transistors in 1978 (the 8086) to 7,500,000 transistors in 1997 (the Pentium II), not to mention the many functionalities that have been added over the years.(1) Thus, the processor has adapted to its environment, which is, ultimately, the users.
Intra-architectural competition has also been present, with AMD and Cyrix introducing clones of one of the dominant architectures (the Intel 80x86 architecture).
Two principal lines of microprocessors are evaluated--the 80x86 line, including clones, and the 680x0 line, including follow-on Powerpc microprocessors.
Remarkably, the 8086 is still with us, buried deep in all succeeding Intel 80x86 instruction sets.
When asked about the type of configuration of hardware, all of the reporting ISEs (100%) indicated that hardware based on the Intel 80X86 processor was the standard for personal workstations in their companies.