Shawn Chen, Taipei; Joseph Tsai, DIGITIMES [Friday 8 June 2007]
With AMD and Intel pushing their quad-core server processors at Computex Taipei 2007, Digitimes got a chance to talk to Boyd Davis, general manager of server platform group marketing of Intel to discuss Intel's plans and thoughts about the new quad-core processors.
Q: What was the main factor that caused Intel to bring its 45nm Harpertown server processor forward to this year?
A: Intel's product launch is directed by the demand of clients, which has nothing to do with the competition in the market. Currently, product development is almost complete therefore it is natural for the company to launch the Harpertown processor ahead of schedule. The company expects to mass produce the processor in the fourth quarter this year.
Q: In the current server market, competition among CPU makers over semiconductor technology has boosted the migration rate of new platforms. Can the enterprise market catch up in technology?
A: In the past, the server product lineup had a slow migration rate due to the long research time in developing the processor. However, with the assistance of nanometer processing, CPU technology now can advance faster, which shortens the product manufacturing time, sequentially. Intel used to have CPU as the unit for server migration in the past, but is now using platforms. The current platform is expected to last until Penryn processor launches in the fourth quarter.
Q: What are Intel's thoughts about the delay of AMD's native quad-core processor Barcelona?
A: AMD's so-called native quad-core processor has a difficult challenge in technical and manufacturing terms and even Intel would have difficulty facing such challenges. Intel currently still adopts two dies on one chip for its Harpertown processor. The technology is much easier, the product has higher yields and performance is almost the same as the native quad-core processor. Therefore, Intel will continue to use this design in 2007.
Q: With the server market currently crossing over several different fields, besides the enterprise sector, in what markets do you expect to see good performance?
A: Other than the enterprise market, HPC (high-performance computer), blade server and workstation sectors are all expected to have good performance. In the past, middle and small enterprises had the highest server adoption rates, but now demand for HPCs, blade servers and workstations is increasing due to demand from multimedia and Internet search engines and the Internet communication markets. These fields are expected to perform better than others.
Source:Intel discusses quad-core processor server market