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Intel Government The Courts Hardware

Despite FTC Settlement, Intel Can Ship Oak Trail Without PCIe 140

MojoKid writes "When the Federal Trade Commission settled their investigation of Intel, one of the stipulations of the agreement was that Intel would continue to support the PCI Express standard for the next six years. Intel agreed to all the FTC's demands, but Intel's upcoming Oak Trail Atom platform presented something of a conundrum. Oak Trail was finalized long before the FTC and Intel began negotiating, which means Santa Clara could've been banned from shipping the platform. However, the FTC and Intel have recently jointly announced an agreement covering Oak Trail that allows Intel to sell the platform without adding PCIe support — for now."
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Despite FTC Settlement, Intel Can Ship Oak Trail Without PCIe

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  • by robot256 ( 1635039 ) on Friday November 05, 2010 @10:53PM (#34144856) what the actual issue is here? And I did RTFA.

    Something about Intel pushing a new proprietary graphics bus into a new chipset...they never actually mentioned how the FTC thing got started.

  • by gman003 ( 1693318 ) on Friday November 05, 2010 @10:59PM (#34144880)
    I went and looked up the specs for the chip in question. It's a SoC chip, just a PCI bus is all I could find. There's no market reason for PCIe, and it really wouldn't even offer much of a benefit, since the single-core CPU is barely pushing a gigahertz. The FTC behaved pretty much reasonably in this case.
  • by Joe The Dragon ( 967727 ) on Saturday November 06, 2010 @12:17AM (#34145210)

    more like light peak only no DVI no USB no vga.

    also light peak only works with intel video and if you want to use your usb keyboard or mouse $30 cable or hub that needs a wall wart as light peak may not pass power.

    want Ethernet $30 cable

    want to use a ati or nvidia video chip you may need a piggy back cable to make it tie into the light peak network.

  • by dgatwood ( 11270 ) on Saturday November 06, 2010 @12:30AM (#34145268) Homepage Journal

    Furthermore, it has been feared that with the push towards systems on chip, that Intel would eliminate the PCI-e bus as well leaving no way for any graphic company to supply a discrete graphics chip for netbook or notebook computers.

    If they did that, every manufacturer of even moderately high-end laptops would drop their CPUs faster than an LSD addict drops acid.

    Even if Intel's GPUs were the best in the industry, there are too many other critical things you wouldn't be able to properly support without PCIe---ExpressCard slots, FireWire, maybe even eSATA (unless they add more SATA ports to the chipset).... IMHO, dropping PCIe would be suicide for Intel.

  • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Saturday November 06, 2010 @05:29AM (#34146034)

    That's not a good comparison. Intel has an obscenely high priced chip. Fine, they always have for those people who have more money than sense. They also have reasonably priced chips. Try instead looking at, say, a Core i5-760. 2.8GHz quad core chip for $210. Look up some performance numbers and then compare to AMD chips. It isn't very favorable. More or less they need their 6 core chips to compete, and then it is only competitive if you happen to have an app that can use all 6 cores (which is very rare still). For example if you look at Anand's benchmark ( you find that the 760 matches the 1090T in many tests, and an 860 beats in almost all of them.

    Once you've got some roughly even performance, then compare build prices. You'll find that Intel compares quite favorably. Not saying AMD doesn't offer good value, but Intel does as well.

    In performance per watt and raw highest performance, Intel has AMD beat. In performance per dollar, they are highly competitive too. AMD has just not been doing well lately, unfortunately.

    Don't try to contrive situations to spin the truth, look at things accurately.

  • by arivanov ( 12034 ) on Saturday November 06, 2010 @05:37AM (#34146042) Homepage

    Issue is that Atom except Intel STB boards with their media accel processor is deliberately crippled in terms of video performance. As a result the entire system ends up being crippled wholesale giving the consumers a perception that the computer is slow while it really isn't.

    Nvidia has demonstrated this - when paired with a devent video chippery Atom makes a perfectly adequate desktop and notebook. As a result Intel has gone as far as damaging its own media STB roadmap to lock Nvidia out so that Atom does not cannibalise its more expensive CPUs. This is all being done with the tacit support of Microsoft to ensure that demand for "cheap windows" wanes together with cheap computers.

    IMO, this decision is a BIG loss for the consumer. This platform is an example of what is wrong about Intel "innovation" as we now it. It is driven not by the desire to improve, but the desire to screw competition. was Nvidia or AMD I should definitely take the FTC to court on this one. This allows Intel a wholesale way out of the concent degree in the segment where competition is at its fiercest - low end notebooks and tablets.

  • by Starrider ( 73590 ) on Saturday November 06, 2010 @10:54AM (#34147154)

    High-end graphics and discrete cards are making up a smaller and smaller percentage of the market. It is quickly getting to the point that the only people who are buying discrete GPUs are gamers and graphics professionals. Most people just don't see the need for the added expense.

    The "mid to high-end gaming market" is fairly small on the PC, relative to the entire PC market.

  • Intel's high-end consumer products aren't where they make their money.... and enough of them make it into prebuilt machines from Dell, HP, anyways.

    Most high-end Intel CPUs are sold as server solutions, where a graphics card makes very little difference.

Things equal to nothing else are equal to each other.