Intel 486 microprocesor, 1989.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
The Intel 486 microprocesor was introduced in 1989 and marked a significant improvement in the procesing capacity of computers over that of the previous Intel 386 (introduced in 1985). In addition, the 486 procesor was the first to offer a built-in 'math co-procesor'. This increased computing speeds because complex mathematical functions could be procesed away from the central procesor.