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Intel Killing Off Desktop/Enthusiast PCs?

A post on SemiAccurate breaks down some information from PC Watch (translation) suggesting that Intel's upcoming Broadwell CPUs will be soldered to the motherboard, rather than socketed, a detail they have now confirmed with a pair of OEMs. They offer the distressed opinion that this will be a death knell to the desktop PC and the enthusiast market, and though they add that they've received information indicating there's a "good chance" that the Sky Lake processors that will follow Broadwell will be socketed for one or two generations to follow, they conclude: "By then the last remaining overclockers and experimenters on the PC front will be gone, and for good technical reasons." Thanks Ant via Slashdot.

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56. Re: Intel Killing Off Desktop/Enthusiast PCs? Nov 27, 2012, 14:08 Beamer
jdreyer wrote on Nov 27, 2012, 13:18:
Beamer wrote on Nov 27, 2012, 12:17:
There are reasons why most chip companies don't bother much with the boards. There are reasons why everyone mocked 3dfx when they bucked that trend. Yes, some of this is just getting more product out there, and those issues disappear when you're as large as Intel, but that manufacturing infrastructure, and that enormous amount of depreciation, is not really worth the added revenue stream.

Making it a weirder decision.


If Intel goes this route, cutting out all 3rd party mobo makers, and AMD tanks (as is looking more probable), how likely is it that DOJ will step in and break apart Intel? They would be the only player in the desktop/laptop/server market for procs and mobos.

I'd say next to none.

The big argument Intel would make is that this isn't about the US, it's a global corporation. Whereas AT&T were telephones, a service solely in the US, Intel is a sign of US leading the world, not a corporation dominating the country. They'd argue that breaking them up would just open the chance for an outside company, they'd claim Chinese, to get a foothold that would otherwise be impossible.

While you could definitely argue that Intel fit the standard definition of monopoly, I think it would be hard to argue that:
1) The country is better off with them broken up
2) There's a reasonable way to break them up
3) By the time all of this was decided, they'd still be the powerhouse they are today. They've been slow to respond to mobile and low power, and those areas are rising very rapidly while desktop is declining and laptop is rising far less rapidl. Intel doesn't seem well set up for the way the market will look 15 years from now
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