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Analyst says Intel is lagging behind in processor technology

Written by Rich Fiscus (Google+) @ 14 Dec 2011 6:27 User comments (11)

Analyst says Intel is lagging behind in processor technology According to Piper Jaffray analyst Gus Richard, Intel is falling behind in the processor market thanks to their failure to compete in the lucrative mobile device segment.
While Intel has continued to concentrate primarily on performance, says Richard, consumer interest has largely shifted to convenience and mobility. As a result, the SoC (System on a Chip) processor has become increasingly important.

In a research note this week he wrote (via CNET):

As an example, there is nothing leading edge about Apple's A5 processor. However, the performance of an iPad is perceived by users as better than a PC. This is because the product has a longer battery life, instant on, and a fast internet connection. The A5 processor is not faster than an Intel processor but instead has a large number of IP blocks that execute different functions with lower power and typically more quickly than a general purpose CPU (Intel).


He also suggested that despite not even manufacturing their own chips, Apple has an advantage over Intel because of the important role software plays in modern chip technology.

There is certainly something to be said for that suggestion. Even between different mobile devices, how the processor is used can be just as important as what it can do.

For example, while Android devices typically use processors which are very similar to those found in Apple's mobile products, device characteristics like performance and battery life are highly dependent on the underlying OS and apps.

At the same time, it would be a mistake to discount the traditional desktop and laptop market in the equation, which is where Intel processors still shine brightest - including in Apple computers. While smartphones and tablets may be used more frequently by many people, they aren't anywhere near ready to take over many of the most important tasks.

If you are doing something very processor intensive, encoding a video for example, there is no substitute for raw speed. Having a 64 bit CPU doesn't hurt either.

And one thing Intel is definitely working on is adapting those traditional processors to use more of a SoC approach. Their Sandy Bridge and upcoming Ivy Bridge processors include onboard GPUs and Quick Sync technology for video encoding and decoding.

While it's true the old philosophy of concentrating almost exclusively on speed is falling by the wayside, as people expect their mobile devices to perform more tasks traditionally handled by PCs that will still play a role in the future. The real challenge is to figure out how to make a processor which conserves power whenever possible but runs quicker when necessary.

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11 user comments

114.12.2011 7:15

OH! GOD please don't tell me people really think this.

And then have experts saying it's true and base expectations on this data.

214.12.2011 10:10

Quote:
However, the performance of an iPad is perceived by users as better than a PC
and this is what is wrong with the world.

314.12.2011 10:45

Quote:
and this is what is wrong with the world.
I can think of a dozen other reasons that are better than that to show whats wrong with the world. Starting with most Analysts being anal about the topic they are discussing.

414.12.2011 23:43

Originally posted by xtago:
OH! GOD please don't tell me people really think this.

And then have experts saying it's true and base expectations on this data.


Well the basis of the article is true in a way given that intel does not have any SoCs for smart phones on the market, and the best offering they have for the tablet market are the Atom CPUs which are not quite as power efficient as the likes of the TI,Samsung,and Nvidia SoCs I believe. In that regard they are lacking but by the title of the article, it makes it sound as if they are lagging in the true CPU market, and to some degree I think that is true. From the sounds of it, based on an article I read(Why is Ivy Bridge still Quad Core) Ivy Bridge could expand core counts but Intel is holding back to keep Sandy Bridge from looking to out dated.

OS: Kubuntu 12.10/Windows 8 -- CPU: Intel Core i7 2600K -- Motherboard: MSI P67A-G45 -- Memory: 2x4GB Corsair Dominator -- Graphics Card: Sapphire 4890 Vapor-X -- Monitor: Dell 2208WFP -- Mouse: Mionix NAOS 5000 -- PSU: Corsair 520HX -- Case: Thermaltake Mozart TX -- Cooling: Thermalright TRUE Black Ultra-120 eXtreme CPU Heatsink Rev C -- Hard Drives: 1x180 GB Intel 330 SSD/1xWD 1 TB Caviar Black/1xWD 2 TB Caviar Green/2xWD 3 TB Caviar Green

515.12.2011 0:13

Originally posted by Xplorer4:
Originally posted by xtago:
OH! GOD please don't tell me people really think this.

And then have experts saying it's true and base expectations on this data.


Well the basis of the article is true in a way given that intel does not have any SoCs for smart phones on the market, and the best offering they have for the tablet market are the Atom CPUs which are not quite as power efficient as the likes of the TI,Samsung,and Nvidia SoCs I believe. In that regard they are lacking but by the title of the article, it makes it sound as if they are lagging in the true CPU market, and to some degree I think that is true. From the sounds of it, based on an article I read(Why is Ivy Bridge still Quad Core) Ivy Bridge could expand core counts but Intel is holding back to keep Sandy Bridge from looking to out dated.
Intel is holding back sandy bridge because their only competitor (AMD) isn't even close. Once AMD releases a good chip, Intel will spank them with an even better one. The truth is that Intel is the world leader at what they do, and people still use PCs.

Quote:
the performance of an iPad is perceived by users as better than a PC

Maybe people who do nothing but email and facebook...let them try encoding a 1080P video with an iPad and say that the performance is better. Heck, let them try to edit a spreadsheet and say the performance is better.

Quote:
and a fast internet connection

LoL...the iPad doesn't even have 4G...and page loads are slow even when on WiFi.


615.12.2011 0:33

What makes an apple product perfect is the belief that it is perfect.

715.12.2011 7:42

Intel is an evil behemoth (still under multiple anti-trust investigations in multiple countries). It took AMD upstaging them a few years back to get them to actually do something better/new for PCs (while they engaged in deceptive practices/lies until the new Core CPUs were ready), they still can't even touch nVidia/AMD in the graphics market and Atom CPUs are mostly only in some of the lower-end mobile devices.

815.12.2011 12:16

Originally posted by KillerBug:
Originally posted by Xplorer4:
Originally posted by xtago:
OH! GOD please don't tell me people really think this.

And then have experts saying it's true and base expectations on this data.


Well the basis of the article is true in a way given that intel does not have any SoCs for smart phones on the market, and the best offering they have for the tablet market are the Atom CPUs which are not quite as power efficient as the likes of the TI,Samsung,and Nvidia SoCs I believe. In that regard they are lacking but by the title of the article, it makes it sound as if they are lagging in the true CPU market, and to some degree I think that is true. From the sounds of it, based on an article I read(Why is Ivy Bridge still Quad Core) Ivy Bridge could expand core counts but Intel is holding back to keep Sandy Bridge from looking to out dated.
Intel is holding back sandy bridge because their only competitor (AMD) isn't even close. Once AMD releases a good chip, Intel will spank them with an even better one. The truth is that Intel is the world leader at what they do, and people still use PCs.

Quote:
the performance of an iPad is perceived by users as better than a PC

Maybe people who do nothing but email and facebook...let them try encoding a 1080P video with an iPad and say that the performance is better. Heck, let them try to edit a spreadsheet and say the performance is better.

Quote:
and a fast internet connection

LoL...the iPad doesn't even have 4G...and page loads are slow even when on WiFi.
Well said KillerBug. Intel holding back regarding AMD's future successes is totally true and typically indicative of a "business strategy"

915.12.2011 12:17

Originally posted by Tazer247:
What makes an apple product perfect is the belief that it is perfect.


HA! How true!!

The biggest trick the Devil did was to make people believe he didn't exist.

1015.12.2011 12:19

Originally posted by xnonsuchx:
Intel is an evil behemoth (still under multiple anti-trust investigations in multiple countries). It took AMD upstaging them a few years back to get them to actually do something better/new for PCs (while they engaged in deceptive practices/lies until the new Core CPUs were ready), they still can't even touch nVidia/AMD in the graphics market and Atom CPUs are mostly only in some of the lower-end mobile devices.
I certainly won't argue that they are evil...but AMD can't touch the i5 at the same price, and the i7 dominates the best AMD server processors. AMD can't even make a workstation processor with hardware AES...and the f**king i3 can do that!

Plus, AMD doesn't have a good mobile chip either.

1115.12.2011 18:08

This is funny, Intel is going to show their mobile chips for Android come CES conference on January 10, 2012. I'm taking a wait and see approve on this one.

http://www.androidcentral.com/intel-ceo...ndroid-hardware

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