After years of investigating Intel’s trade practices against
AMD, the European Commission officially filed formal charges against the chip-making
giant, as detailed in a statement of objections (SO) filed to the company today.
“I can confirm the statement of objections has been sent,” said European Commission
spokesman Tom Van Lierop, offering no further comment.
The European Commission raided
Intel’s offices in 2005 on suspicions of anticompetitive activities. In 1999,
Intel settled charges with the US Federal Trade Commission, and a later
investigation by the FTC in 2000 was dropped. In 2004, the Fair Trade
Commission in Japan raided Intel’s Japanese
office, and in 2006 the Korean Fair Trade Commission raided Intel’s office
in Seoul. Both
raids were conducted as part of antitrust investigations in their respective
In the United States, AMD sued Intel in June 2005 on charges
of coercion and anti-competitive practices, running full-page ads in several US
newspapers. “You may not be aware, but Intel’s illegal actions hurt consumers –
everyday,” read the ad, pointing to a 48-page complaint
(PDF) on AMD’s web site. Today the
lawsuit is still working its way through the courts, with additional lawsuits pending
in South America and other jurisdictions.
AMD enjoyed a surge in market share in 2005 and 2006 with
its Opteron and Athlon 64 line of CPUs. However, with the launch of Intel’s heralded
Core 2 line of CPUs in July 2006, AMD found itself losing much of the traction they
had previously gained. At the end of 2006, AMD’s market share was 25% of all shipments
for x86 processors, but by March 2007, that number slipped to less than 19%.
While AMD’s stock price has fallen, Intel’s has risen. Between
slipping market share, the acquisition of Canadian GPU manufacturer ATI, and yet
of substantial price cuts from Intel, AMD has found itself in a difficult
place: while its most recent earnings report
posted a 13% rise in quarterly revenue, those same figures also included losses
of $600 million.
According to Intel’s Principles
for Responsible Business (PDF), “Intel encourages competition, which benefits
consumers by prohibiting unreasonable restraints on trade. Intel competes
vigorously while at the same time adhering to both the letter and spirit of
quote: How will the judge (or jury, if it is a jury trial) see it?
quote: You'll notice that large restaurant chains sell Coke, but never Pepsi.
quote: Those arguments ignore one simple fact, proven throughout modern history. Secure, complacent companies do not radically innovate nor slash prices. Only fearful companies do. AMD, in fear for its life, created the best CPU in history, and nearly knocked Intel off its perch. Intel in turn, afraid of the results, countered with radically low prices and introduced new products at a dizzying pace. And us consumers bathed in the glow.
quote: The end-result of government action is restraint of some sort. Will this restraint help consumers to lower prices and better products? History says otherwise.
quote: Perhaps Vendor A didn't carry their product, but Vendors B, C, and D did. One could easily argue that it helped them as much as it did Intel, by forcing them to forge strong relationships with vendors and VARs...something that, prior to this, they had failed to do.
quote: AMD, in fear for its life, created the best CPU in history, and nearly knocked Intel off its perch. Intel in turn, afraid of the results, countered with radically low prices and introduced new products at a dizzying pace. And us consumers bathed in the glow.
quote: And you want to replace that with government intervention? Is it truly impossible for people to learn from history? Such market meddling has NEVER benefitted consumers, though many, many attempts have been made. They always result in higher prices and less innovation.
quote: AMD gathered market share faster then ever before in its history
quote: Antitrust laws exist to protect you and I, not large corporations like AMD.
quote: Wikipedia's Opinion:Fanboy is a term used to describe an individual (usually male, though the feminine version fangirl may be used for females) who is utterly devoted to a single fannish subject, or to a single point of view within that subject, often to the point where it is considered an obsession. Fanboys remain loyal to their particular obsession, disregarding any factors that differ from their point of view.
quote: If you're watching a boxing match, and your guy is getting turned into pulp, it strikes me as a bit myopic to say, "that divorce is really hurting Joe right now." I'd say that getting beat the f- up is hurting Joe.
quote: If Joe could not train because he spent all his time dealing with the divorce, then yes Joe is getting his butt kicked because of the past problem.
quote: Considering the unresolved nature of the court case (and the impossibility of deriving a false conclusion from false data*), I would categorize the harm to AMD as both hypothetical and indefinite.
quote: With a higher R&D budget, both Barcelona and R600 could have been out sooner.
quote: Maybe ATI would have been bought sooner, so AMD could pump money into R600 sooner. Maybe AMD could have afforded to pour money into making the 80nm manufacturing process better, or even shrink right down to 65nm.
quote: Your making up an argument and arguing against it when no one here posted it.
quote: But, you assume Intel was using fair tactics.
quote: Dell doesn't go to newegg and buy their CPUs and making their systems.
quote: I fail to see the relation to this article though.
quote: The EU is about as far left on the political scale as modern politics gets. Why do you think the economies are doing horrible over there?
quote: What the punishment would be, I don't know
quote: "Hey everybody! We're here, alive, you elect the people that appoint us and look at us! We're launching torpedoes at a big evil American firm up to no good! Please love us...*sniffle*"
quote: Yeah, maybe you would like it to be as it was back in the 1800s here in the US: child labor, getting paid by company credits to buy stuff at the company store instead of cash, being exploited by your superiors, not being paid overtime, need I go on?