The official launch of Intel Corp.’s Pentium 4 is Monday, but press activity is already intense. Amidst coverage of the first P4 chips, running at 1.4GHz and 1.5GHz clock speeds, are rumbles about the lack of DDR SDRAM support as well as the chip company’s workstation strategy.
Intel’s lack of a dual-processor platform for workstations, apparently due late next year, has put computer manufacturers in a somewhat uncomfortable position. The unofficial definition of a workstation in the past has entailed a two-CPU system. The leading supplier of workstations in the US, Dell Computer Corp., has never sold single-CPU workstations. With a tradition of marketing dual-processor systems as the only true workstations, suppliers will have to rethink their sales pitches. Some analysts believe that Intel’s promotion of single-chip workstations will inadvertently help Advanced Micro Devices, lacking dual-processor support, to compete in that market.
Rumors that that the 64-bit McKinley server chip, the successor to the Itanium, is behind schedule have also been denied by Intel staff who say the chip will hit the market by the end of 2001.