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).
The tablet wars are going to get very interesting now that Microsoft has pushed out Windows 8 and their “design point” device the Surface RT. Already this morning there are multiple articles about this new OS and hardware from both sides of the argument. It is interesting to see the comments that range across Facebook and other social networking sites about the new OS, and more importantly about Microsoft’s Surface RT. This last product has created its own subset of fans and haters outside the general argument about Windows 8. So the big question is, where does Windows 8 and Surface RT stand in the market on the day of the launch, and where do they really fit in?
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.
AMD is an interesting company; on the one hand they have some incredible ideas and can really bring some great features to life. Where they sometimes have an issue is bringing them to market and conclusion. One of the reasons for this is their lack of funds. If you do not have enough money to push your products (like Intel and nVidia usually do) then you have to rely on the community to adopt and support your goals. We have watched this happen multiple times with everything from GPU based Physics (the integration of Ageia PhysX onto the X19xx series GPUs) to OpenCL. AMD shows off what is capable and then due to lack of support and money has to step back and watch as the “rich kids” run off with the toys.
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.
Intel plans to launch another line of processors specifically designed for tablets in the first quarter next year. This is a core chip from their Y series based on the Ivy Bridge architecture and in BGA packaging, while in the third quarter of next year Haswell versions of the same series should appear.
You would think today was a slow news day as we see people reporting on something we talked about almost a month ago (well really more than that). It seems that people are waking up from the haze of all of the news about Windows on ARM (Windows RT) and starting to realize that x86/64 tablets are going to be much, much more attractive to both consumers, businesses and both manufacturers and developers.
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).
According to recent rumors it seems that TSMC and Samsung will be able to push out 14nm full node and 16nm half node FinFET products earlier than anticipated. This is certainly going to be good news for many customers of the two foundry companies including Apple and nVidia.
One of the thing things that we find interesting in many leaks and even official documents about upcoming products is the use of percentages and multipliers without much real data. We saw this with Microsoft and their performance claims for Windows 8’s new desktop and 3D graphics performance. They used a ton of percentages and yet forgot to list the hardware they were comparing or any of the raw numbers. Not too long after that we saw ARM claim a base 50% performance increase with their next generation Mali GPUs over their current generation Mali GPUs. Again we do not have any real numbers or the basis for these claims. Unfortunately for ARM even a 50% performance increase will not make their next gen faster than some of their competition.