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If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker

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t.alex
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
t.alex   5/14/2011 9:00:38 AM
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Heh, Intel wants to make ARM processors, not Atom?

Warren3
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
Warren3   5/11/2011 7:05:58 PM
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Intel showing no signs of trepidation of competing with ARM with their Intel Architecture CPU at the 22nm node, within any useful power envelope.

trapper1204
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
trapper1204   5/9/2011 3:56:44 PM
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Apple has left quite a few bread crumbs to follow that indicate a Hybrid Computer is in the works. Apple will not dump intel you crazies. That would mean dumping their entire pro line. My prediction.. and it should be noted that i am alway right, is that Apple will use the same technology they are using to switch between graphics card, to dynamically switch between CPU's. When the user is surfing the net, playing the stocks, commenting on CNET, or just lurking in Facebook, the Hybrid Mac will be using the ARM processor and lower end graphics card, which will run cleaner and greener, and dramatically increase battery life. However, when that user fires up Final Cut Pro, the OS will dynamically switch to the higher performing Intel CPU and Higher end graphics card, to get the job done. The entire Macbook line will change. No more choosing Macbook or Macbook pro. The Hybrid will adapt to you... which is the way it should be. I also believe the Macbook air will be ARM only. Mark my words. When will this happen? Sooner than anyone expects.

MouR
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
MouR   5/5/2011 8:21:07 PM
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I doubt Intel would move to foundry model for its advanced 22nm technology. Intel's fabs are high cost in Capital and wafer cost and they are leveraged for fast ramp of its core products making 60%+ margins. Why would it give up a technology advantage for competing architecture and lower margins with high capital investment? Foundry makes sense when utilizing older Fabs and technologies and keeping these factories full after they have been depreciated. What could be a game changer is if Intel utilizes ARM license to make its own (re)-enter into the ARM products, selling its design. Intel already made 3 entries and exists into ARM: i860 was dumped as it was competing with x86; StrongARM from DEC had not clear winning position; xscale got niched and sold to Marvell. But now with Mobile being clearly ARM based, decoupled from x86 on PC, it could be the time to re-enter into a big market. And the 22nm power/performance/future scaling is an excellent time to move there.

chipchap42
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
chipchap42   5/4/2011 8:58:21 PM
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Intel's strategy for foundry is to do it for products which don't compete for capacity at the same time as its own processors - hence the deal with Achronix which won't ramp in volume until after Intel has moved its processors on a node. Therefore it seems unlikely to me that Intel would want Apple, with its huge and fast-ramping volumes, to compete for capacity as well as giving the ARM architecture the benefit of the new 22nm mode and tri-gate structure.

DMcCunney
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
DMcCunney   5/4/2011 8:21:19 PM
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It would mark a reversal of product strategy on Intel's part. Some folks here may recall that Intel *used* to be in the ARM business, producing the StrongARM line of ARM architecture CPUs. They started by buying the StrongARM business from DEC, who sold it to settle a lawsuit in 1997. They later revamped it as their XScale line, and sold that to Marvell in June 2006, in a restructuring intended to focus on their own architecture. Apple's business might well be big enough and profitable enough to make it attractive for Intel to resume making ARM CPUs. The question is what else they might do. If they snag Apple as a customer, will they try to leverage that by getting wins from other customers who prefer the ARM architecture? Of course, they will then be competing on some level with their own ATOM processor (and I'm sure the ATOM group will be thrilled at the notion), but that competition will be for new designs that want a low power solution but haven't settled on an architecture yet. I really don't see vendors with existing commitments to Intel or ARM switching architectures. The issue may come down to foundry capacity, and best guesses about the market down the road. Fabs are enormously expensive, and even Intel doesn't have the capacity to satify *all* of the potential demand. Do they use it to make Intel or ARM architecture products? The determining factor might just be Google, whose Android OS may be the most popular choice for emerging efforts. Android has a high level of consumer visibility, and devices are seen as cool *because* they run Android. That's been primarily used on ARM CPUs thus far, and Intel support is still a work in progress. A vendor looking at getting into the tablet business these days might go ARM simply because Android runs on it, and they see market value in using Android.

RayFifo
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
RayFifo   5/4/2011 7:00:00 PM
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"And if Intel-manufactured A5 processors are so good for tablet computers does that put a dent in Intel's claims for some its processors?" NO NO NO. This is a way for INTC to fill an expensive 22-nm fab with product. Also, Apple is not going to sell INTC produced A5's to anyone, so the entire table market x-Apple is still open to Atom! There's a many table design wins to date for Intel - check it out.

JmS0
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
JmS0   5/4/2011 6:59:50 PM
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Intel would have to dig a lot harder than that to dig its own grave. If they want to provide foundry services, they see that as a revenue source and they would hurt that business if they limit it to only producing totally non-competitive chips. Also, producing A5 will give someone at intel the ultimate detailed look at what one competitor is doing. Even with a license in place, I think ARM should be nervous about that. Not intel.

eewiz
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re: If Intel wins Apple, becomes leading ARM maker
eewiz   5/4/2011 5:02:32 PM
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"And if Intel-manufactured A5 processors are so good for tablet computers does that put a dent in Intel's claims for some its processors?" Exactly. If Intel fabs A5 in 22nm for Apple, then Intel is digging its own grave. As if now, Intel can hope their advanced processes can partially cover for the not-so-lowpower x86 CPUs in competition with ARM for tablets.

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