Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Tech Link (Industry): Intel Fires Back at A.M.D. Over Bragging Rights on Chip

So I remember some AMDroids saying how I am just a "braggart", in fact, being such a braggart, I even make my own image brag about brag so I don't hide the fact that I am such (much more like I don't hide the fact that I am a FanBoy). So yeah, you can't hurt me with such empty words.

But yeah, I guess it's not just "me", but Chipzilla is such a braggart too. In fact, The New York Times covers what the uber FanBoy said over at IDF, and I quote:

“This is about bragging rights,” the Intel chief executive, Paul S. Otellini, said in an interview after his speech opening the three-day Intel Developers Forum, an annual event for makers of PC’s and accessories.

Expand for more FanBoyz...AMDroids, you can go away now!

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 26 — A war of words between Advanced Micro Devices and Intel is heating up as they vie to claim the advantage in creating a new generation of chips with four processing cores.

A week after A.M.D.’s chief executive, Hector Ruiz, called Intel an “abusive Goliath” using monopoly tactics, his Intel counterpart responded Tuesday that the harsh words were those of a rival losing ground on a new battlefront.

“This is about bragging rights,” the Intel chief executive, Paul S. Otellini, said in an interview after his speech opening the three-day Intel Developers Forum, an annual event for makers of PC’s and accessories.

Mr. Otellini announced that Intel would begin shipping quad-core processors for both high-end PC’s and servers in November, at least six months before quad-core processors are due from A.M.D.

Advanced Micro was first to make dual-core chips, featuring two processors, an approach the industry has taken in recent years to gain performance without increasing PC energy consumption. And in the last two years it has made significant inroads in Intel’s market share of both desktop and server computers.

But Intel, despite a deep round of cost-cutting announced Sept. 6, is beginning to reverse its market-share decline based on the success of its first two generations of dual-core processors, analysts said.

“I think that Intel now has the initiative,” said Roger Kay, president of Endpoint Technology Associates, a computer industry consulting firm. “They’re hitting their deadlines and even pulling them in a bit.”

Intel’s success in quickly bringing to market several generations of multiple-core chips is reflected in its winning back customers like Rackable Systems, a server maker that had moved almost entirely to A.M.D.

“We’re hearing a lot behind the scenes about new customer wins for Intel during the next nine months,” said Richard Doherty, president of Envisioneering, a computer industry consulting firm in Seaford, N.Y.

Intel and A.M.D. are taking different routes to the next generation. On Monday night at a dinner for reporters here, A.M.D.’s chief technology officer, Phil Hester, displayed a test wafer holding prototypes of the company’s quad-core processor, to be commercially available in mid-2007.

A.M.D. is beginning to focus on new designs that it is planning for 2008 based on its soon-to-be-completed acquisition of ATI Technologies, a maker of graphics coprocessors. By combining aspects of the two types of processors on a single chip, A.M.D. will be able to create a more balanced system in the future, he said.

“This is not just technology for technology’s sake,” he said.

In contrast to Intel, which will initially make its quad-core processor by packing two connected dual-core chips in a single package, A.M.D. will wait until its manufacturing process can achieve features as small as 65 nanometers, compared with the current 90, permitting it to place all four processor cores on a single chip.

Intel has a substantial lead in 65-nanometer manufacturing, and said Tuesday that it planned to add capacity in Arizona and Israel for a total investment of $9 billion in the most advanced generation of chip making. But the company decided to package two dual-core chips in a single package to gain a half-year lead in the new quad-core approach.

At a news conference, Mr. Otellini defended the approach, asserting that it would not result in any performance disadvantage. “The initial ones are multi-chip, but so what?” he said. “You guys are misreading the market if you think people care what’s in the package.”

Intel also announced that it was making quicker progress on an initiative it introduced at its annual developer conference last year to reduce the power required for processing by a factor of 10. “In 2008 we’ll meet our decade goal of a 10X reduction in power,” he said.

According to Intel executives, this degree of power savings is needed to enable a future generation of ultra-light and portable computers.

Mr. Otellini also described a new research effort to build a processor capable of a trillion mathematical operations a second on a single piece of silicon. The research prototype, which contains 80 specialized math processors controlled by a single general processor, will be commercially available within five years, he said.

The project is an effort to match the processing power of what was in 1996 the world’s fastest supercomputer. That machine was used by weapons designers and was composed of 10,000 Pentium microprocessors, occupied about 2,000 square feet of floor space and cost $50 million.

In the interview after his speech, Mr. Otellini said that the new teraflop chip did not undercut the need for Intel’s troubled Itanium microprocessor, which the company has aimed at the high end of the computing marketplace.

Intel executives also described a new notebook design code-named Santa Rosa, to be available in the second half of 2007. It will include the coming 802.11n wireless standard, potentially five times as fast as current Wi-Fi systems.

Source:Intel Fires Back at A.M.D. Over Bragging Rights on Chip

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