Wondering whether Intel's first tablet and smartphone chip has what it takes to battle Tegra, Snapdragon, and OMAP? VR-Zone claims it has some early answers from anonymous sources within the company. Apparently, the Red Ridge prototype Android tablet got benchmarked recently and its 32nm Medfield SoC put on a show, managing a score of 10,500 in the Caffeinemark 3 Java benchmark. That's not bad compared to roughly 8,000 for a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon or 7,500 for a Nvidia Tegra 2. MIT Technology Review also had some nice things to say about the tablet's smooth performance last month.

Unfortunately, things aren't as rosy on the power consumption front, as Medfield is allegedly consuming an estimated 2.6 watts when idle, and 3.6 watts when weighed down by a 720p Flash video. Intel hasn't had the best track record when it comes to mobile chips (remember Moorestown and Oak Trail?) and there's also an elephant in the room: For all we know, Nvidia's quad-core Tegra 3 could perform even better, and it reportedly only uses 2 watts under full load. Intel promised that Medfield would ship in "early 2012," so we're hoping to see devices for ourselves at CES next month.