Intel welcomes AMD and Arm competition, because the PC clearly isn't dead
- 10 December, 2020 02:00
If you think Intel is worried about AMD and Apple, the company isn’t flinching.
On Tuesday, Intel’s Gregory Bryant said the chip giant welcomed the competition because that basically means there’s money to be made and that the PC business is thriving.
“We’ve always said, only the paranoid survive,” said Bryant, who runs Intel’s client computing group, largely responsible for laptops, desktops and workstations. “I think that’s alive and well inside of this company. And I take all competition, whether that’s from Apple or the other ARM guys, Qualcomm, MediaTek or AMD—I take that all very seriously.”
“Anytime you’re a growth business and a healthy business, there’s going to be competition,” Bryant said in a talk with investment bank UBS as well as with Yahoo! Finance. “We absolutely intend to compete and to grow. And we feel good about our performance and our roadmap.”
The roadmap looks busy for both laptops and desktops. Bryant said Tiger Lake H would come out in the first half of next year in laptops, along with Rocket Lake for desktops. Following that, Bryant said Alder Lake would hit in the second half of 2021.
Although Bryant didn’t detail those upcoming chips, Tiger Lake H is likely a higher-wattage, more powerful version of its popular 10nm 11th-gen Tiger Lake chip. Tiger Lake itself has performed beyond expectations, he said, with sales 30 percent higher than expected.
Rocket Lake is expected to be a more modern core design mapped onto Intel’s existing 14nm process. Alder Lake could be a change-up for Intel, as it appears to be built as a mobile part that combines little cores and big cores, like some Arm chips already do. Intel once turned up its nose at such designs, but apparently that’s all water under the bridge now.
If nothing else it’s clear that the PC, once expected to die off, is enjoying a new lease on life. Bryant said that while consumers and business snapped up all the laptops as the pandemic hit, Intel also saw desktop growth during Q2 and Q3. He said Intel expects that to continue as well. “The desktop is obviously critical for that kind of high-end workstation content creation as well as high end gaming business,” he said.