29 posts are filed under this symbol.

Intel – CPU Roadmap Looking Good

intelPerhaps investors will pause for a moment from their ritualistic dead-horse-beating about the demise of Intel (INTC) and the ascendency of AMD (AMD). They should read a recent performance benchmarking from AnandTech, “Intel Woodcrest, AMD’s Opteron and Sun’s UltraSparc T1: Server CPU Shoot-out“.

It’s a great overview of the performance of Intel’s new Woodcrest Server chip, and how the Core architecture is improving the performance of their chips across the board. In my discussion of the New Four Horsemen, I also linked to an article comparing the Intel Core versus AMD’s K8 architecture.

Intel is not without troubles. But the idea that AMD is going to continue to take large share gains is absurd. AMD clearly took advantage of the horrific Xeon performance in the server space. Much of the Intel share loss and most of the profit hit was from losing this high margin business. Read the Anandtech articles and it’s clear to me that the days of easy share gain for AMD are over.

Add to the fact that one analyst is seeing the signatures of a nasty price-war developing and I think we are seeing what Andy Grove likes to call an inflection point.

Now they just need to fix their awful marketing.

The real loser here? Sun Microsystems (SUNW) and their build-their-own CPU strategy pulled from the playbook of virtually every computer company that went out of business in the last 20 years, something we pointed out six months ago.

In the semiconductor business, the clock re-starts every two years. You put yourself out of business or the other guy will. There is no permanant advantage. And the clock just restarted. Game on boys.

Intel Communications Unit – Unofficially on the block

The San Jose Mercury News picks up on ‘several unnamed sources’ who confirm what we predicted weeks ago – that Intel (INTC) is selling their communication semicondustor business.

Read my original post, from April 29.
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Intel – First, Fire the Marketing Guy

I reviewed the slides presented by Paul Otellini at the Intel (INTC) 2006 Annual Meeting.

The most interesting one puts the recent market share decline in perspective. What surprised me was the big leap back in ’95, when the Pentium branding pulled the rug out from under AMD (AMD) and Cyrix who had ‘cloned’ the i486 nomenclature. That was a masterful marketing move, second only to the best one in semiconductor history, Intel Inside.

Intel Market Share

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The Four Horsemen of Web 2.0

Cisco (CSCO), Oracle (ORCL), Sun (SUNW), and EMC (EMC) were the darlings of the internet boom and were referred to as the ‘Four Horsemen‘. Your broker was overheard in 2000 “Yes, things are in fact a bit irrational but these companies have real products, revenues, and earnings and are investment-grade leaders of the new economy.”

Your broker neglected to mention that the biblical Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse were steered by four riders – Conqueror, War, Famine and Death. I’ll leave it to my readers to pair them appropriately.

Four Horsemen

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Intel’s Communication Group – Destiny Fulfilled

intelIntel corp (INTC) lands on Page A1 of the WSJ with a story covering their Analyst Day presentation in New York yesterday. The big news that is getting widespread coverage in many media outlets- including BusinessWeek – is that they are cutting $1BB (8%) in spending but without across the board job cuts.

The big problem is Intel’s work force grew 17% in the last year alone. So, the obvious path is to find businesses with high costs and low revenue, and spin those out to people who can manage them tighter. It sounds like this is exactly what Intel plans to do.
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Impressions of a Data Center

365Main ImageA few weeks back, while in CA for OFC/NFOEC, I was lucky to get a late night tour of 365 Main, a massive, state of the art data center near the Embarcadero in San Francisco. My guide, Peter Kranz, was someone I worked with and co-adventured with in College who is now the owner and CEO of Unwired, a San Francisco based CLEC. His equipment is in this data center, and he invited me in for a look.
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It’s Official – CPU Wars Over

It’s official, the processor wars are over. Apple just announced that their iMac low end computer uses the new Intel Core Duo processor exclusively, effective today. All Macs will be all Intel by the end of this year.
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Sun wants to “Change the Planet”

Last week it was open source, this week Sun (SUNW) wants to change the planet. Unfortunately, doing so will require a street fight with Intel.
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Sun – The Internet- No the Software- No the Hardware Company

Sun Microsystems (SUNW) CEO Scott McNealy has a short but sweet interview with Businessweek outlining Sun’s new business strategy – sell hardware (and services) and give the software away for free.

If it wasn’t for the occasional communication from McNealy everyone would agree their company crossed the event horizon of the Intel/Microsoft black hole long ago.
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