Today Anandtech had an announcement from Intel about a reduction to their desktop motherboard business with a ramp down planned over the next three years. This means that Intel will begin to bow out of this market slowly with an expected exit sometime around 2016. Intel will continue to work with third party manufacturers in the design and build of their boards including the development of reference boards for new form factors (like the one used for the Next Unit of Computing). The question is; what will this mean to both Intel and the rest of the desktop market? In truth it means very little to the majority of the market, but it is significant in many ways.
Google (and ARM as a whole) is finding out the hard way that building an OS is not that easy and without proper and full support you are going to have problems across your entire platform. Today and Google I/O 12 Google announced and showed off Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Now this sounds great but there are still a ton of devices that are waiting for ICS (Android 4.0) that was announced last year.
Intel's Extreme Edition version of Ivy Bridge for LGA2011 socket could be very similar to the existing Sandy Bridge-E. Although the latter has up to eight physical cores (according to some CPUS in the Xeon E5 line) and up to 20 MB of L3 cache, the commercial version of the Sandy Bridge-E Core i7 inside the line has six active cores and up to 15 MB of cache.
Intel is looking to the future even as their newest CPU, the 22nm Ivy Bridge, is taking something of a beating in the media. According to a few slides that have hit daylight Intel is already working on moving some of its FABs to 14nm in preparation for their next generation of CPUs. Of course this is not that big of a deal really, Intel has moved from one process to the next like clockwork (insert “Tick-Tock” joke here).
Intel plans to use 14-nanometer technology in conjunction with the next generation of processors codenamed Broadwell, heirs of the 22-nanometer Haswell which is expected next year. Intel's chief for technology development, Justin Rattner, said that the development of new production technology is progressing according to the plan and that Intel is expected to use this within one to two years. He emphasized that Intel's aggressive development of new production technologies will allow an extension of Moore’s law for the next 10 years. Moore's Law says that the number of transistors and the density of transistors on chips doubles every two years.
CES 2012, Las Vegas, Nevada – We found Asus in the Trump Tower near the top of the building. I honestly think they had the entire floor up there, but we were only there to see a small portion of what Asus has to offer to the consumer. Asus, as most of you know already is one of the leading manufacturers of computer components. They also have their own channel marketing team and make quite a bit more than just motherboards, GPUs, Audio cards and networking gear.
There used to be a thing called truth in journalism. It meant that when you published an article you should at the very least check your facts if you are presenting it as “news” in the world of editorial articles things are different as an editorial is nearly always an opinion based article with some facts thrown in for furn. What has happened though is that with the introduction of Blogs, Fan Sites and other venues for information some of the fact checking has gone out the window in the effort to be the first to report on a juicy bit of news. When an article hits one of the big sites it often gets spread around the net and becomes the “truth” simply by means of repetition. We have watched this many times (and it is something that Apple’s PR and marketing thrive on).
Two more pieces of the puzzle are falling into place with the move away from silicon in microprocessors. Silicon has been the mainstay for creating processors for… well for a very long time. However, it has its limitations as the need to make the transistors smaller continues to increase. Even if you are not a believer in More’s Law you still cannot get around the fact that processors (GPU CPU and “other”) are all growing more complex. This means that the number of components continues to grow and we are faced with a couple of choices; either die in the vacuum of space or… no wait that is someone else. The choices are actually very clear; make the processor dies larger and larger or shrink the manufacturing process.
The Irish agency for construction planning An Bord Pleanala approved Intel’s plans to build a new factory for the production of processors. It is a facility in which they should produce processors built on the 14 nanometer process, and should be located in the Intel campus in Leixlip County Kildare.
Since the rebirth of Apple in 1997 the PC market has had to listen to the constant drone of analysts foretelling the “post PC” world is upon us. It is a common statement made by Analysts that really do not even know what a “PC” is anymore. Well to help some of them do their jobs a little better let’s go back and define some of this for them and then take a look at where the market is and why claims of a post PC era are quite simply a falsehood.