While putting a game face on the subject, this shift away from straightforward clock performance is mostly new to Intel, having already been tackled by competitors Advanced Micro Devices and IBM. The acceptance by customers and different market segments to this transition remains unclear, analysts said. To read more about Intels transition to dual-core architecture, click here.
In the summer, Intel admitted finding a "root flaw" in the chip sets supporting its 64-bit Nocona processor aimed at workstations and servers. The problem involves the integrity of the PCI Express data handling and will be fixed with an update by the end of the year, the company said.
Intel has touted its support of various technologies into chip sets to partners and analysts. As a major backer of Wi-Fi and WiMAX wireless standards, Intel heavily promoted its "Grantsdale" chip set, which would let a laptop function as a Wi-Fi access point.
But this summer, the company admitted that a manufacturing flaw in the chip would prevent customers from gaining the advertised functionality. And Intel later stated it will never provide the support. Still, a company spokesman described this move as a "business decision," adding that system vendors "told us that they didnt need this feature at this point." These shifting roadmaps and mistakes have sapped developer and partner confidence in the company, which has been admitted by Intel executives. At the Intel Developer Forum in early September, chief operating officer Paul Otellini apologized to a keynote audience, calling the problems "some fumbles." He said future goals will be more closely aligned with capabilities. Click here to read about how Intel is vague on processor delivery schedules. However, from the continuing shifts in plans since that admission, and the companys reported hazy approach to shipment forecasts, it looks as if little has changed behind the Intel curtain. Lets face it, offering a target of a year for a product will improve shipment performance statistics; its just not very useful data. Consider if airlines started counting their on-time performance for flights by the day instead of by the minute, we wouldnt have much to judge by, would we? Next Page: Microsofts sorry record.