This is not a surprise. Intel has to balance their demand with their capacity. Building too much capacity causes excessive costs that show up on the bottom line. Upgrading an existing fab doesn't add as much capacity as bringing another fab on line. I'm sure they will bring it on line when the time is right. As for the older fabs, well in my experience, if they can't be upgraded, they will be shut down and sold off.
I understand that they plan now to invest for upgrades in the 3 existing fabs on site (Chandler). They had plans to upgrade the Ireland fabs which run at much older technologies. Upgrading these fabs to 14nm would be a major investment. It does make sense to us. It is cheaper to upgrade newer fabs which have newer technology nodes. The gap between the 22nm fabs and 14nm is much closer. Some tools of these fabs can be also used for 14nm. So, is Ireland still on the table and if so what is a good timing?
This is really old news. Intel has been telling analysts and the press that it is cutting capital spending for a year now. If this "shocking story" is news to you, you haven't been paying attention. Go look up the stories that EETimes did last March. And again in June.
If this is supposed to be an indicator of more woes in the PC world, it's a year-old lagging indicator. Way to drive through the rear-view mirror, EETimes!
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