I find this hard to believe, but chatter is rife amongst the old gossip queens (also known as motherboard makers) that Intel is going to exit the entry level mobo market.
The talk comes after several sources said that the monolith will drop its 865 and 915PL (below) and GL chipsets before the end of the year and that no replacement products are planned. Adding further weight to this is the fact that Intel is pushing these models hard on its third party developers. This strategy is usually a sure sign that it wants rid of its stock, much in the same way that Microsoft has been re-advertising Windows XP when Vista is just around the corner.
What doesn’t sit well with me, however (apart from the reheated curry I had last night), is why any company – especially one with such a dominant market share as Intel – would pull out of a sector where it is making money? Sure, there may be less margin on entry level hardware than brains in Jordan’s head, but a profit is a profit is a profit.
The logic? Perhaps the new partnership with Apple is forcing Intel to rethink its priorities, with its fabrication space seemingly wasted producing kit for the bargain basement? Or perhaps it just wants to shift customers to higher level machines? Whatever the case, if true, there would be a huge scramble from the likes of ATI, SiS and Via for the scraps.
Despite this, I can’t see it happening. Still, it is the secret hot topic of the moment, so if I know about it then you know about. I’m nice like that… (Oooh, I can feel that Madras)