back to article Intel: Yeah, yeah, 10nm. It's on the todo list. Now, let's talk about AI...

At Intel's Data-Centric Innovation Summit today in Santa Clara, California, Chipzilla reiterated its commitment to deliver 10nm Xeon processors in 2020, to maintain its market leadership, and to adapt its silicon to AI-oriented workloads. That'll be the same 10nm that's years and years late, with manufacturing nightmares …

  1. artem

    > "I don't talk to customers about nanometers," said Shenoy. "At the end of the day what they care about is delivered system-level performance...Our roadmap and the products we're putting forward gives us confidence we'll continue to win."

    But customers do care about TDP, price/performance ratio, platform features (like PCI-E lanes, memory speed), the number of cores per socket and, sorry, Intel, you're royally f*cked: there's this interesting Threadripper 2990WX and AMD Epyc Rome is on its way. No wonder you fired Brian Krzanich but that was too little and too late. The ship ran aground. Luckily for you it's temporarily.

    Releasing the fourth iteration of the SkyLake uArch (Intel Core i9-9900K, Core i7-9700K, Core i5-9600K CPUs) could have seemed like a crazy idea several years ago, now it's reality.

    1. J27

      Tick, Tock, Tock, Tock

      If AMD actually does release the chips they're rumored to next year they'll be beating Intel across the board. That's something that hasn't happened since the Athlon 64 vs Pentium 4 era.

  2. cornetman Silver badge

    The pace of dev at AMD is quite frankly staggering.

    And in the areas that AMD is challenging, Intel really have nothing new to bring to the table.

    AMD's chiplet design is going to ensure that they get to high, economic yields massively faster than Intel can with their increasingly enormous slabs of silicon.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Christian Harten

      Of course this is somewhat of a problem with AMD CPUs since you only get up to 8 cores per die. This means even a single socket system will behave as 4 NUMA nodes, which makes the amount of PCIe Lanes and Memory channels completely unremarkable. It's the same trick they used with Opterons back in the day (in addition with 2 integer cores sharing an FPU).

      If AMD manages to squeeze more CPUs into a die that's when Intel really is in trouble.

      1. cornetman Silver badge

        I'm no expert in this area so I defer to higher expertise on this subject, but I suspect that the secret sauce is in the efficiency of their infinity interconnect. AdoredTV has gone into this a little by looking at their published papers on interconnect architectures, interesting watching.

        Their CPUs do offer NUMA and not NUMA options with their own separate tradeoffs, the overhead of the interconnect being the downside for non-NUMA.

        1. YourNameHere

          By doing this, they keep the die size reasonable and profitable. Plus they can not spin out these massive packages with 32 cores and decent yields. They may not be as fast in all areas but from a sustainable manufacturing model it's brilliant. It would be interesting to see what AMD yields would be if they had to have all 32 cores on one die.

          1. cornetman Silver badge

            > It would be interesting to see what AMD yields would be if they had to have all 32 cores on one die.

            I suspect that Intel would be able to answer that question for you.

            I don't imagine that it's pretty. :D

        2. Christian Harten

          It's always NUMA, I believe you can get it to emulate a non-NUMA system which will cause it to perform somewhat worse. Anything that accesses RAM not local to the die you're accessing will have to through infinity fabric which is constrained through bandwidth and latency (max PCIe 3.0 x16 speed). The same goes for peripherals like GPU or NIC.

  3. JohnFen

    PR code

    ""I don't talk to customers about nanometers," said Shenoy"

    Which is PR code for "we don't have it and we don't know if or when we might have it, so we'd prefer to talk about anything but that."

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: PR code

      Which is PR code for "we don't have it and we don't know if or when we might have it, so we'd prefer to talk about anything but that."

      And it is also an unsavoury echo of Elon Musk's arrogant dismissal of investor & analyst questions.

      I very much suspect customers do ask "where's your 10nm silicon?" Presumably Shenoy tells them that's a question for little people.

  4. Tom 64

    Marketing bluster and inappropriate analogies

    Seems like Intel are paying their marketing department more than their engineers recently and they absolutely reek of corporate desperation.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Intel knows that it is in deep trouble

    According to internal Intel documentation they know they are in deep trouble and that they won't be competitive in the lucrative server segment until 2020 at the earliest - if then. AMD's Rome CPU will absolutely crush Intel's server sales. Even the loyal Intel customers of decades who have seen Rome's basic performance, architecture and TCO acknowledge Intel isn't even in the same league. It's good for enterprise not so much for Intel. Semi Accurate has some great analysis on Intel's desperate situation.

    1. adam payne

      Re: Intel knows that it is in deep trouble

      Unless of course Intel try to give massive discounts to system builders to only use their chips. It's not like it hasn't happened before.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Intel knows that it is in deep trouble

      We saw an article only the other day that suggests AMD might possibly get to 5% of the server market in a couple of years. That is not deep trouble.

      As with the entire tech sector, Intel has a problem in that share prices are driven by hope and greed more than strict economic reality, and too much rests on share prices. But remember when Microsoft had a big problem and had to discover security in a hurry? Disasters like the OS That Nobody Speaks Of between XP and W7? Yet today Apple is nowhere in the server world and has about 5% of the world laptop market.

      This isn't about technical merits but about the sheer size of Intel's masse de manoeuvre.

  6. John Savard

    I Wish Them Both Well

    I want both AMD and Intel to do well, and bring us new and exciting products. Intel needs competition to keep it honest, and the sooner we can enjoy the benefits of their new 10nm process, and everybody else's 7nm process, the better.

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: I Wish Them Both Well

      new and exciting products

      Spectre and Meltdown weren't exciting enough for you?

      1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: I Wish Them Both Well

        @ Phil

        Have one of these ->

        That was good :)

  7. _LC_ Silver badge

    DOS processors

    I call them "DOS processors" now, as they are obviously not capable of running multiuser systems.

  8. HmmmYes

    Funny one - working o ntheir silicon for AI..


    AI these days is mainly neural nets - 1000s of cheap, simple CPU core with 8 bit maths, messaging.

    Xeon is a handful of expensive cores running with a big fucking cache.

    1. Daniel von Asmuth

      AI is exploding

      What will Intel do? Make brooms and shovels to clean up the rubble?

  9. adam payne

    They insisted Chipzilla is broadening its portfolio beyond the processor market.

    ...Our roadmap and the products we're putting forward gives us confidence we'll continue to win."

    PR for we don't have anything to go against AMD with so we'll act like it doesn't bother us.

  10. herman Silver badge

    Tiny elephant

    10 nm is a very tiny elephant in the room. Intel's problems is really only a trifling matter. No biggie.

    Just pocket change. Nothing to worry about.

  11. Captain Scarlet Silver badge

    Autonomous vehicles will run on data just as today's vehicles run on gasoline

    So basically we are going to have peddle cars in the future (As I can't see Data acting as a trickle charge)

  12. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge


    "Autonomous vehicles will run on data just as today's vehicles run on gasoline."

    The self-driving part won't work very well and the data will be shit while the gasoline will be very expensive and will be really really necessary.

  13. Ubermik

    Although the AMD chips look like they "could" give intel a run for their money to some extent it will depend on where larger IT hungry companies are on their upgrade cycles. Bringing out a new chip the year AFTER a large proportion of the market has upgraded isn't anywhere near as good as going to market BEFORE they do

    So timing will play a part of the final analysis regardless of how the two match up against each other

    The bottom line performance per socket isn't quite as important as many try to claim either, with most hardware being extremely cheap now barring ram you head into territory where intel would need one of their chips to be competitive price wise to 1.5 AMDs even 2 AMD equivalents or more in some cases.

    Yet with some chip comparisons its AMD chips that outperform the intel opposition by that sort of margin despite also being significantly cheaper

    But of course the energy use and cooling issues also feature, so I think there wont be a definitive "this is better" answer, it will depend on whether heat production, budget, rack space, energy consumption or just raw performance per U of rack space is the overriding factor in a companies decision making process

    Then of course there will be the people who will want to change "just because" even if its "slightly" inferior and those who wont change "just because" even if the AMD offering is superior

    So its about as predicable across many market sectors as what peoples favourite food or colour would be across an entire country

    But I do hope AMD can carve out at least a reasonable market share partly just because its quite admirable how strongly they have come back and I do feel they deserve the rewards for that, but also because without intel having such a strong and uncontested dominance they could (and do) charge whatever the heck they wanted when they were the pimp for the only "ride" in town because outside of a board game a monopoly doesn't favour the customer

  14. 89724102172714182892114I7551670349743096734346773478647892349863592355648544996312855148587659264921 Bronze badge

    People who feel in control underestimate risk. Intel will pay for it's complacency.

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