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A new Intel roadmap claims the company will miss its January 20, 2008 launch cycle -- Taiwanese media points the finger at conspiracy

DigiTimes ran an article earlier this week detailing that Intel will miss its January 20 launch date for all three of its 45nm quad-core desktop processors.

Monica Chen claims, "Intel has already notified its partners that it will push back the launch of the three CPUs to February or March next year, depending on AMD's schedule for triple-core and the upcoming Phenom CPUs."

AMD's newest corporate roadmap released last week claims its tri-core Phenom processors, codenamed Toliman, will launch at 2.3 GHz and 2.4 GHz frequencies in "late Q1 2008."

These Intel processors -- dubbed the Core 2 quad Q9550, Q9450 and Q9300 -- are expected to be Intel's first mainstream 45nm desktop offerings. The company launched its ultra-enthusiast QX9650 3.0 GHz quad-core processor on the November 11, 2007.   Between September 2007 and December 2007, Intel changed the launch date of these processors from "early" January to January 20, 2008.

Chen also adds, "Launching the CPUs now will not benefit Intel much in its battle with AMD, while they could cause damage to Intel's 65nm quad-core CPUs, therefore the company has decided it is in no rush to release new products until AMD is able to present more of a threat."

Intel insiders, speaking off the record, would not comment on the specific January 20th launch parts.  One employee added, "It’s a gigantic stretch and almost humorous to think [Intel] would delay products based on a rumored ongoing delays of a competitive product line announced just six days ago."

January 20th, 2008, would also mark the launch of Intel's dual-core 45nm offerings.  These processors, the E8190, E8200, E8400 and E8500 sell in bulk quantities at $163 to $266; with core frequencies ranging from 2.66 GHz to 3.16 GHz. 

Intel's 45nm mobile processors are confirmed for a January 6, 2008, launch.  Several notebook manufacturers tell DailyTech they already received processors shipments for volume.

These five mobile offerings will range from 2.1 GHz to 2.8 GHz, though Intel guidance suggests these are only dual-core offerings.  Quad-core mobile processors are scheduled on the company roadmap, though not until the Montevina Centrino refresh in late 2008.

January 6, 2008, also marks the launch of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.  Dell, HP and Gateway already notified media about embargoed Centrino products set to debut on that same day.

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A breather for AMD?
By BernardP on 12/19/2007 2:12:31 PM , Rating: 2
If this proves to be true, could it be that Intel is letting AMD breathe a little? Intel wants AMD to survive and stay relatively weak. Intel doesn't want to become a monopoly, which would happen if AMD goes under.

RE: A breather for AMD?
By masher2 on 12/19/2007 3:07:03 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. It's a sad fact of our current business climate; it's in Intel's best interest to keep AMD a (relatively) healthy competitor. Releasing superior products that give AMD no room whatsoever to compete would simply earn Intel a multi-billion dollar slap from regulators.

RE: A breather for AMD?
By mrdelldude on 12/19/2007 3:23:24 PM , Rating: 2
Additionally, I'd imagine it's still cheaper for Intel to produce 65nm chips, due to the investment made in the past, vs the startup time to move to 45nm. They want to continue to leverage the cost of the 65nm fabs.

So the longer they can stretch out the 65nm lifespan, the more financially effecient it is for them.

RE: A breather for AMD?
By JackBeQuick on 12/19/2007 3:36:33 PM , Rating: 2
Intel's "tock" cycle has always cannibalized its previous offerings. That's pretty much the point.

Intel launched a whole new architecture a few months after its first 65nm offerings.

"So the longer they can stretch out the 65nm lifespan, the more financially effecient it is for them."

That's so not how it works. The day Intel rolls out its first 45nm chip is the day the 65nm chips start to lose value. They can still make money for the company, but they can cram more chips on a 300mm wafer at 45nm than 65nm, and that's what they're going to do.

"Vista runs on Atom ... It's just no one uses it". -- Intel CEO Paul Otellini
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