Intel’s been on a tear ever since it’s Core 2 architecture was launched. The company now continues to release new chips with better performance and lower power usage. On the other hand, not only has AMD fallen behind on performance and production technology, it has done nothing to bridge that gap. AMD has continually delayed release of its new chips and its recently released line contains glitches that affect both stability and performance. This has affected its stock and it was reported not too long ago that AMD’s market value dropped below what it paid to acquire ATI!
I’ve traditionally been a fan of Intel but I think we can all agree the industry needs AMD’s presence. Without anyone around to challenge Intel, we could easily fall back to the Pentium days when Intel acted as a monopoly. Competition spurs innovation and price reductions. Intel wouldn’t really have put that much effort into their new Core architecture if AMD wasn’t chewing away market share with cheaper, better chips. Intel wouldn’t have cut prices so much over the last 2 years if it weren’t for AMD. There was a period when AMD enjoyed profitability and rising market share but unfortunately they seemed to have stirred a sleeping giant.
Amidst AMD’s current delays and chip problems, Intel has announced they are also delaying the release of 3 new chips. This is not because Intel has problems and needs the delay. They simply don’t need to release these new chips so quickly because AMD doesn’t have anything that competes. Intel continues to hold the performance lead and has a huge advantage in production capability and technology. This alone shows why AMD needs to really step up their game. Without leapfrogging, AMD will only get further and further behind Intel. Without AMD, Intel is free to jack up prices and hold back on releasing new products – these are the practices of a monopoly. While this benefits Intel, it hurts us consumers.
I also read that AMD’s planning on releasing a line of tri-core chips. To me that just seems really gimmicky. At this point AMD needs a hit product that’s going to sway customers their way. Tri-core chips just doesn’t seem to cut it. What’s the point when there are quad-core chips available? If their argument is that they can price it in between dual-core and quad-core chips, I don’t think that really flies too well either. I bought my quad-core for just $280 – I’d much prefer paying that tiny bit more and getting a whole extra core.
Even though I prefer Intel chips (because they’re better at the moment and probably will be for another good year or two), I definitely want to see more companies out there capable of challenging Intel.