Intel has fessed up to the cancellation of two processors, saying single core chips just don't do it for the company anymore.
Intel has now confirmed earlier reports that predicted the next-gen Pentium 4 "Tejas" and the next-gen Xeon "Jayhawk" would be axed. Both processors were once slated to arrive in the second quarter of next year and be built on a 90nm manufacturing process.
What's the problem with the product? Intel said it's simply ready to move away from single core chips in favor of chips with two processor cores per die. "We are accelerating our dual-core schedule for 2005," an Intel spokesman, told El Reg. Intel will now have dual-core desktop chips in 2005 and dual-core chips for laptops shortly thereafter. That's at least 12 to 18 months ahead of previous schedules.
On the server side, Jawhawk was meant to follow the Nocona processor, which should arrive shortly. Both processors are aimed at the dual-processor server market. Now it appears that Intel will roll out a dual-core part to replace Nocona instead. For multiprocessor servers, there is relatively little change in plans. Potomac is still on schedule for the first half of 2005 as a single core chip and will be followed by the dual-core Tulsa product in late 2005 or early 2006.
Intel's roadmap changes are the latest in long string of oddly timed flip-flops by the company. Intel, for example, refused to entertain the thought of an x86-64-bit chip in public, saying such a product was not worth debating until a rich set of 64-bit software existed. Then, poof, Intel announced that it would roll out the x86-64-bit Xeon - Nocona - this year. On the Itanium front, Intel was very quiet about its multicore path, letting Sun and IBM discuss putting four or more cores on chips. And again, Intel popped out the Tukwila processor seemingly from thin air. Now it's doing much the same with dual-core chips.
Intel, however, is uncharacteristically leaving the public in doubt as to exactly what the new dual-core chips will be named or how they will perform.
This news arrived as we broke the word on Whitefield - a multicore server chip that makes use of Intel's mobile processors. There is speculation that Intel will be using the Pentium-M chips extensively across its desktop and server line. ®