Intel Expands Base With Market-Specific Processors

Posted on April 10, 1998 
Filed Under AsiaBizTech, Julian

By Julian Matthews

April 10, 1998 (PENANG, Malaysia) — Intel Corp. plans to introduce Pentium II microprocessors to tackle every segment of the market including “lean PCs,” notebooks, desktops and high- performance workstations and servers, said CEO-designate Craig Barrett.

Barrett outlined the roadmap for 1998 in a presentation given April 2, while on a five- nation tour. Intel’s strategy means it will pursue the low- end, sub- US$1000 PC market, which it has largely ignored until recently.

Barrett said Intel was forced to re-think its single-processor strategy because of increased segmentation of the market and the differing needs of end- users.

“Previously we would introduce a new product for the workstation market and as volume manufacturing and cost reductions occurred it would drift down into the desktop PC, basic PC and mobile PC markets,” he said.

Barrett said that in 1998 the company would offer microprocessors based on its P6 architecture, but with differing features for each of the four market segments: workstation/ servers, performance PCs, basic PCs and mobile PCs.

For the server/ workstation market, Barrett said the company will introduce by mid-1998 a high- performance microprocessor based on the Pentium II (P6) architecture that will be branded separately.

“It will have full- speed backside bus and multi- processor capability, and will not find its way down into the desktop PC market,” he said.

The Slot 2- processor, code- named Deschutes, is expected to have 8GB of main memory, a speed of up to 450 MHz and 2MB of L2 cache. Barrett said that the company will soon introduce Celeron, a low- cost, Pentium II microprocessor without L2 cache, which is targeted at the sub-US$1,000 PC market.

“We are very aggressively going after that business, whoever our competitors may be,” he said.

Barrett said Intel also will continue to introduce improved Pentium II microprocessors for the mainstream desktop market throughout 1998. Such product introductions will start with the 333MHz version with 512KB of L2 cache, followed by the 350MHz, the 400MHz and the 450MHz.

Barrett said the company’s products and complementary content development programs were aimed at stimulating the market and finding new users and new uses for technology.

“We want to give the end-user a better experience whether it’s in games, Internet commerce or bringing media, telephony or video over the Internet,” he said.

Barrett said that despite its venturing into new business areas, microprocessors would continue to be the mainstay for the company’s business for a number of years.

“The 64-bit Merced processor is due out by the second half of 1999, and almost every major computer company in the world has committed to design systems based on the Merced. We are very excited by that support both from a hardware and software standpoint,” he said.

Barrett also said that microprocessors designed using Intel architecture will perform at GigaHertz speeds by 2000.

Published in Asia BizTech, Apr 10, 1998

by Julian Matthews, Asia BizTech Correspondent

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