An interesting article at Ars Technica takes a look at some compelling data (the longer-than-normal processor update cycles in Apple's personal computer lineup) and speculates that Apple's enthusiasm for its partnership with Intel might be cooling. Like Apple's soured relationship with once-BFF Google, this may be the result of Intel's increasing activities in the mobile computing space.
Intel has been working lately on "Atomising" the Android mobile OS in lieu of the upcoming Froyo (or 2.2) release so that it can be installed natively on x86 devices-- Atom-based netbooks in particular. Says Renee James, Senior VP for software and services at Intel: "Our expectation is that will be based on the Froyo release and will be available this summer to developers... wasn't tremendously difficult, as we have a lot experience in Linux". The fun is supposed to arrive for developers this summer.
"In an announcement at the International Supercomputing Conference, Intel provided further details on the many-core chip that it hinted at earlier in the month. The first product based on the new design will be codenamed Knight's Corner, and will debut at 22nm with around 50 x86 cores on the same die. Developer kits, which include a prototype of the design called Knight's Ferry, have been shipping to select partners for a while now, and will ship more broadly in the second half of the year. When Intel moves to 22nm in 2011, Knight's Corner will make its official debut."
One name was conspicuously absent from the list of companies backing Google's WebM project and the VP8 codec. Despite other chip makers and designers being on the list, like AMD, NVIDIA, ARM, and Qualcomm, Intel didn't make an appearance. Yesterday, the company made its first careful commitment to the WebM project.
"I have been writing about Moorestown since Intel started talking publicly about it in 2007, so the official unveiling of Intel's first x86-based SoC aimed at the smartphone market marks the end of a long journey. Moorestown's appearance also marks the beginning of another journey, as Intel prepares to face down ARM in its quest to win handset and tablet makers over to the x86 camp. In many ways, this is the biggest and most important Intel product launch since the original Atom introduction."
"Intel has provided the first hands-on demonstration of a laptop running its Light Peak technology, at the company's inaugural European research showcase here in Brussels. Light Peak is an optical interconnect that can transfer data at 10Gbits/sec in both directions. Intel hopes Light Peak will one day replace the host of other PC interconnects, including USB, DisplayPort and HDMI. The demonstration laptop was sending two separate HD video streams to a nearby television screen, without any visible lag."
"A laptop with Light Peak built-in was shown off during Kahn's speech, where a single cable was used simultaneously to transmit Blu-ray video, a feed from a high-definition camera and a duplication of the laptop's display onto another screen. What's more, the Light Peak cable was plugged into the laptop through a tweaked USB 3.0 port with components added to receive the optical signal while still being able to accept normal USB 3.0 devices. "
Intel has responded to the Federal Trade Commission's antitrust investigation, unsurprisingly challenging the FTC's allegations as well as criticizing the agency for what the company calls an attempt "to turn Intel into a public utility".
"Among the most widely deployed embedded operating systems on the planet is Wind River's VxWorks real-time OS. This week, Intel's Wind River division is updating VxWorks to version 6.8, providing new multi-core and 4G wireless capabilities. The new VxWorks release comes as the competitive market for embedded operating systems is changing, with the acquisition of rival MontaVista software by chip maker Cavium. MontaVista develops an embedded Linux operating system release that Wind River competes against, with both VxWorks and Wind River's own embedded Linux release."
"Intel has revealed the launch specs for the first-ever line of x86 products that contain both a GPU and CPU on the same die. Pine Trail, the next-generation Atom platform, will pave the way for future integrated CPU/GPU parts from both Intel and AMD."
"Intel's experimental 48-core 'single-chip cloud computer' is the latest step in multicore processing. Intel officials say such a chip will greatly improve performance and efficiency in future data centers, and will lead to new applications and interfaces between users and computers. Intel plans to have 100 or more chips in the hands of IT companies and research institutes next year to foster research into new software. Intel, AMD and others are rapidly growing the number of cores on a single silicon chip, with both companies looking to put eight or more cores on a chip in 2010."
"Intel's plans to overhaul its desktop processors early next year have been detailed almost entirely in a roadmap published today. The lineup is now believed to be headlined by low-powered S versions of the Core i5-750 and i7-860 that will run all four cores at 2.4GHz and 2.53GHz respectively; they should use just 82W of power versus 95W or more and fit into tighter spaces. Each will have 8MB of Level 2 cache, though the Core i7 chips will scale up to 3.46GHz where the Core i5 will stop at 3.2GHz."
"Imad Sousou is the director of Intel's Open Source Technology Centre, which is behind the Moblin project aimed at providing optimized Linux technology for netbooks and mobile Internet devices. ZDNet Asia's sister site ZDNet UK caught up with Sousou at the Open Source In Mobile 09 event in Amsterdam last month to discuss the nature of Moblin and the hardware on which it will run." The interview also covers Intel's views on the netbook and MID market, Windows 7, ARM as a competitor, and Google's Chrome OS and how Intel is working with Google.
"USB 3.0 might be one of the big stories here at IDF, but Intel just showed off a glimpse of the future: Light Peak, an optical interconnect for mobile devices that can run as fast as 10Gbps. That's fast enough to do everything from storage to displays to networking, and it can maintain those speeds over 100-meter runs, which is pretty astounding. Intel says the idea is to drastically reduce the number of connectors on mobile devices, which should allow them to get even smaller - but the demo was on a huge Frankenrig, so don't expect to see Light Peak devices shipping any time soon."
The Intel Developer Forum is currently in full swing, but it kicked off with a speech by Intel CEO Paul Otellini. Well, there's bad news for those of us who long for a time where lots of different architectures compete with one another, ensuring that technology is moved forward. Otellini's plans for Intel basically come down to one thing: x86 everywhere.
More than a decade ago, Intel ran into an issue trying to deliver what was to be the world's top-ranked supercomputer: it looked possible that its new Pentium Pro processors at the heart of the system might not arrive in time. As a result, the chipmaker made an unusual move by paying Hewlett-Packard $100,000 to evaluate building the system using its PA-RISC processors in the machine, said Paul Prince, now Dell's chief technology officer for enterprise products but then Intel's system architect for the supercomputer. Called ASCI Red and housed at Sandia National Laboratories, it was designed to be the first supercomputer to cross the threshold of a trillion math calculations per second.
Intel had to hustle to catch up with competitors in developing chips for mobile devices like smartphones, but the effort led to the development of the highly successful Atom chip, an Intel exec has revealed. Intel kicked off the Atom project in 2004, when it was doing work on developing Arm chips in parallel. At the time the company was "running like crazy" to develop a chip for mobile devices to catch up with the fast evolution of wireless devices, especially voice services, which were peaking at the time.
In a statement to Betanews this afternoon, a spokesperson for Intel confirmed that the company has filed an appeal of last May's European Commission ruling, in which the company was fined the equivalent of $1.4 billion for what it found to be antitrust violations. According to spokesperson Chuck Mulloy, Intel's theory for its appeal is that the EC was prevented from seeing critical and possibly exculpatory documents, on account of an order of the court trying AMD's civil case against Intel in Delaware.
Personally, I've always been very confused by Intel's processor branding. Core Duo and Core Solo were pretty straightforward, but not long after we were dealing with Core 2 Duo and Core 2 Quad, which is anything but marketing friendly. Apparently, Intel agrees with us and has announced a fairly massive branding overhaul.
As was already revealed by eWeek earlier this week, the EU has imposed a massive fine on Intel for abusing its monopoly position. The fine is larger than the one given to Microsoft: 1.06 billion EUR, or 1.44 billion USD, opposed to the 899 million EUR fine imposed upon Microsoft.