Intel CFO Says its Tech is "so Far Ahead", Apple Needs it to Keep up

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Intel CFO Says its Tech is "so Far Ahead", Apple Needs it to Keep up

Intel 4770K Social

Intel CFO Stacey Smith brushes off concerns that Apple will break its partnership, saying that his company is significantly ahead of the industry.

Intel has pretty much always been the leading PC CPU manufacturer, but in 2005, Apple CEO Steve Jobs made the surprising announcement that it would also become the leading Mac CPU manufacturer. Now, almost ten years since the partnership was announced, there are rumors floating around that Apple is ready to break free from Intel, and go back to making its own chips. Intel CFO Stacey Smith certainly doesn't think this is the case, and says that his company is so far ahead of the industry, Apple would be crazy to give up its chips.

"Our leadership over the rest of the industry is extending," Smith said. "We're not delayed relative to the industry. We're actually ahead of the industry."

"For a customer like Apple you'd have to take a big step off performance to step off our architecture," Smith continued. "That is what in essence enables us to win across different customers."

For your information, the rumors started due to Apple's ARM chips that it uses for its smartphones and tablets getting more and more powerful. The theory was that Apple will soon be able to use these chips in its Mac computers, and not have to rely on Intel anymore.

"Apple is a great partner of ours," Smith added. "Like Intel they like bringing really cool stuff to the market ...As long as we're bringing great technology to the marketplace, we're enabling them to do great Apple products.

What do you guys think of this? Do you think Apple will forever be chained to Intel, or do you think Smith is being a bit too cocky? Personally, I'm excited to see what AMD can do with it's unifying mantle API, to finally break Intel and Nvidia's CPU/Graphics Card dominance.

Source: Business Insider

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I don't use Apple anything so it doesn't affect me but whatever makes the market more competitive the better I guess, even if it's a long way until that happens.

Well that's what happens when you have a monopoly, though to be fair that's more AMD's fault then Intel's.

I could be wrong, but I thought Apple was using IBM PowerPC chips before switching to Intel.

I am not sure if Mantle alone would be something that interest Apple to switch to AMD even though Apple was investigating AMD at the same time they moved to Intel. From my experiences some of Apple's considerations deal with power consumption and heat generation and from my experiences with AMD (and it could be different now) I have issues with the heat that AMD hardware creates.

ooooh, gee, if apple dropped intels high priced chips, maybe that would mean the outlandish prices of apple stuff that only gets you overall pitifully average hardware would drop some!..........

on a cold day in hell

wouldn't affect me though, android everything for mobile stuff here, and their computers are not worth the price by a LONG shot, so meh.

Even if they break off and successfully do thier own thing, i dont see how its going to make the slightest difference to the consumer.

Even if it comes out for the best, it just means sustaining the stream of incrementally more powerful machines, and i wouldnt think for a moment that it would lead to cheaper Macs. Cheaper to make, maybe, but not cheaper to buy.

And of course PC users are still going to be on PC. Its akin to hearing someone shouting about something next door, you can hear them but youre so cut off from them that you wish they would just quiet down already.

As for AMD, i will continue to doubt thier ability to surpass either Intel or Nvidia until i start seeing more developers actually working to make thier games support them.

Sanunes:
I could be wrong, but I thought Apple was using IBM PowerPC chips before switching to Intel

You are correct.

As for the theory of switching to ARM CPU's, I highly doubt they are going to do this not unless they basically want to abandon all their legacy software and switch to just iOS with a desktop interface. It would not be compatible with x86 software in any way so all the i software would need to be ported and then they'd need to get all of the multimedia 3rd parties to come over as well, I can't see this happening and if it did I hope Apple fails horribly as x86 is a standard for PC's, last thing we need is to start breaking software.

If their switching from intel to AMD then that's a different matter as they both use x86/64 architecture.

I bet Foxconn is jumping for joy at this news.

Phrozenflame500:
Well that's what happens when you have a monopoly, though to be fair that's more AMD's fault then Intel's.

How's it AMD's fault? Intel's the company that pulls dodgy unethical shit over and over again. They pay companies to use only their chips, they bribe them to delay the release or to not release AMD powered laptops, they threatened to do stop bribing companies if they started working with AMD as well.

They were also allegedly part of the group of Silicon Valley companies that agreed not to try to recruit each others employees, which is effectively theft.

Furthermore, they also falsified benchmarks by creating benchmarking software, and using it to inflate results.

It's not AMDs fault that intel keeps pulling shady shit over and over again and extorting and bribing companies so that they don't use AMD.

I don't use a Mac or anything Apple-related, so this doesn't really affect me.

008Zulu:
I bet Foxconn is jumping for joy at this news.

I see what you did there.

Sanunes:
I am not sure if Mantle alone would be something that interest Apple to switch to AMD even though Apple was investigating AMD at the same time they moved to Intel. From my experiences some of Apple's considerations deal with power consumption and heat generation and from my experiences with AMD (and it could be different now) I have issues with the heat that AMD hardware creates.

IMHO (and I'm not all that knowledgeable... anecdote incoming!) for the price-point the extra heat was not a concern. All I needed for my AMD/ATI rig was adding a case-fan, and all was well. I do also have a comparable Intel/nVidia setup, and the only real difference besides heat that I've noticed is that the Intel system is much more versatile with it's extras while my AMD rig when pushed to higher settings tends to perform a bit better.

What tipped the scales for me to build an AMD rig was how each company handled its multi-cores. Intel strikes a 4-core, and if one core isn't performing right they lock it out and sell it as a 3-core. AMD strikes a 4-core, and all cores must be up to snuff regardless of how many they intend to lock out and market the chip as, making unlocking the extra core(s) a very intriguing prospect. Talk about value per dollar if the system is built with the right parts... Bought a 2 core, running a 4 core in my AMD rig. Had to buy a 4-core Intel to have a comparable system and THAT was expensive.

Of course, that's just my experience, and thus my personal opinion. I could be way off base and/or completely misunderstood what I was being told, or things may have changed since then, but I see no reason to "take sides" (as if THAT'S needed), or turn into some sort of close-minded "fan-boy." In a perfect world, wouldn't it be nice if they could make a collaborative effort and have something like Mantle (or some other similar sort of API) running alongside superior hardware, or is that too "blasphemous" for the fan-boys of either side to even attempt to consider?

Ajarat:

Sanunes:
I am not sure if Mantle alone would be something that interest Apple to switch to AMD even though Apple was investigating AMD at the same time they moved to Intel. From my experiences some of Apple's considerations deal with power consumption and heat generation and from my experiences with AMD (and it could be different now) I have issues with the heat that AMD hardware creates.

IMHO (and I'm not all that knowledgeable... anecdote incoming!) for the price-point the extra heat was not a concern. All I needed for my AMD/ATI rig was adding a case-fan, and all was well. I do also have a comparable Intel/nVidia setup, and the only real difference besides heat that I've noticed is that the Intel system is much more versatile with it's extras while my AMD rig when pushed to higher settings tends to perform a bit better.

What tipped the scales for me to build an AMD rig was how each company handled its multi-cores. Intel strikes a 4-core, and if one core isn't performing right they lock it out and sell it as a 3-core. AMD strikes a 4-core, and all cores must be up to snuff regardless of how many they intend to lock out and market the chip as, making unlocking the extra core(s) a very intriguing prospect. Talk about value per dollar if the system is built with the right parts... Bought a 2 core, running a 4 core in my AMD rig. Had to buy a 4-core Intel to have a comparable system and THAT was expensive.

Of course, that's just my experience, and thus my personal opinion. I could be way off base and/or completely misunderstood what I was being told, or things may have changed since then, but I see no reason to "take sides" (as if THAT'S needed), or turn into some sort of close-minded "fan-boy." In a perfect world, wouldn't it be nice if they could make a collaborative effort and have something like Mantle (or some other similar sort of API) running alongside superior hardware, or is that too "blasphemous" for the fan-boys of either side to even attempt to consider?

You are correct that for the PCs we make heat isn't that much of an issue, but it seems for Apple they like making everything small and compact, looking at the new 5k Retina iMac I think heat could become an issue. Of course I could always be wrong.

Slegiar Dryke:
ooooh, gee, if apple dropped intels high priced chips, maybe that would mean the outlandish prices of apple stuff that only gets you overall pitifully average hardware would drop some!..........

on a cold day in hell

wouldn't affect me though, android everything for mobile stuff here, and their computers are not worth the price by a LONG shot, so meh.

lol exactly my thoughts as well, apple can't WAIT to make even cheaper chips but still sell at absurdly high prices to make that profit margin even higher.

it'll work in their favor even more now since you won't be able to make direct PC comparisons using the same CPU setup, so they can blow hot air out of their ass as much as they want to until someone does an in depth comparison of bang per buck vs a comparable pc setup.

I believe the confidence of Stacey Smith is quite justified, for the time being, as ARM chips simply aren't powerful enough to command the price point that Apple likes for its computers.

Perhaps in a couple years time you could see an ARM based Macbook Air.

Apple is a hardware company, first and foremost. That is it's business model. Therefore, any maneuver it makes is always going to be in support of that business model (at least as long as that IS its business model). When Apple switched to an Intel-based platform, sales of Macs increased dramatically, in no small part due to the ability to dual-boot Windows on the machine, something that could not be done on the PowerPC platform without performance robbing emulation. Leaving the Intel platform would be deleterious to that singular feature and likely cause a massive abandonment on the Mac platform. So, no, I don't think Apple will be leaving the Intel platform unless there is a truly compelling business reason to do so.

Once you understand a company's basic business model (how they make their money), everything they do makes sense and becomes less of a surprise and more just a logical outcome.

Apple sells you hardware.
Microsoft sells you software.
Google sells you.

What is this? The week for people to make whiney complaints about their industry?

theres other chip sets than intel? i thought they all died out a while ago

gigastar:
As for AMD, i will continue to doubt thier ability to surpass either Intel or Nvidia until i start seeing more developers actually working to make thier games support them.

Which can plainly never be done, AMD is 1/100th the size of Intel and they are 1/100th the size of Nvidia yet they are expected to keep up with both (surpass them even). They haven't got the money to throw at every tasty developer and carve themselves a performance exclusivity, you need lots of spare cash for that nonsense.

OT: I highly doubt AMD will be anyone's choice at the high end, they got into the new consoles simply by going with a price so low the others weren't even interested.
Apple being the frequent re-inventor of hot water I do expect them to do something strange, and it is very likely that strange is ARM desktops and iOS for all things, essentially beating MS to the punch since no one willingly goes along with their unified OS shit.
But wait ARM hasn't got the power! You mean your strictly power constrained pocket device can't have the power... shit can get a whole lot faster given the space. On top of that Apple users will never even notice, as long as they are told it's better and some new "apps" are there their shit will be bought like crazy.

As a long-term Apple user, I personally hope that it doesn't produce it own chips, unless it maintains parity with Intel, both in power and architecture. I don't want to return to the old PowerPC days where compatibility with Windows was a struggle. My main rig at the moment is an iMac with Windows installed on a second partiton, and whatever the any PC-elitists think, I'm very happy with the configuration. I game in Windows, and spend a lot of time in it, and were Apple to remove the possibility of native Windows booting from future products, it would probably lose my business.

Apple gained a lot by switching to Intel, not least in quenching the eternal debate over whether PowerPC or x86 architecture was better. Of course, if Apple feels it can produce comparable chips at a profit, it will do so without question. But I'd rather not have to live through the kind of transition Apple users saw when moving from OS9 to OSX PPC to OSX Universal to OSX Intel-only. I'm glad Apple hardware has settled down in the last decade. And if I can't dual-boot, I won't be buying an Apple computer as my main PC any more.

Remember when AMD was the top dog in gaming?

Ah...halcyon days, indeed. Getting a bit tired of Intel's persistent dominance in the market. AMD's really been dropping the ball for the past, what, decade now?

Eh. it's a bit arrogant of them to say so, but they're kind of right.

At least, if apple goes it alone they may really struggle.

AMD kind of keeps up, but not really all that well...

Still, I'm one of those weirdos that likes to combine an ati (sorry. AMD. XD) GPU with an intel CPU...
Nvidia... Eh. Haven't had an nvidia based system in... 14 years...

Sanunes:
You are correct that for the PCs we make heat isn't that much of an issue, but it seems for Apple they like making everything small and compact, looking at the new 5k Retina iMac I think heat could become an issue. Of course I could always be wrong.

Heats an issue with the new iMac as it is on the higher spec models, like the models with the i7 4970K. It idles at 50°C and never gets chance to turbo because the fan curve is set to minimise noise, the temperature soon hits 80-90°C in ten seconds or so. Within a minute its at 100°C and throttling itself.

Instead of running at the typical 4.5GHz it would in a well cooled PC with turbo boost it runs at around 3.5-4GHz because of the thermal throttling, like you and others said Apples industrial design concentrates on issues like aesthetics and noise and it shows here. Mind you the new iMac is a stunningly beautiful piece of hardware.

008Zulu:
I bet Foxconn is jumping for joy at this news.

The Apple chips used to be manufactured by Samsung but are now manufactured by a Taiwanese outfit known as TSMC. Mainland Chinese industry does not have the capacity to use the 20 nm process and is stuck in the 32nm-28 nm range.

LostGryphon:
Remember when AMD was the top dog in gaming?

Ah...halcyon days, indeed. Getting a bit tired of Intel's persistent dominance in the market. AMD's really been dropping the ball for the past, what, decade now?

AMD are not trying to beat Intel. They long ago settled for competing in the low to mid range PC chip markets. Their aim has been value for money rather than trying to go head to head with Intel on pure power.

Hmm, Intel don't seem to understand their customer - they'd lose power and performance, that's not Apple's core target. It's customers don't understand chips (to a large majority) too.

So long as the new Mac is sold as x faster than the last one they'll buy it because it's a Mac and it just works and they just don't have to think about such things.

Not that I overly care, half the fun of a new machine is piecing it together than tweaking the most out of it.

I actually hope AMD's Mantle API gets some serious purchase into the market and manages to convince nVidia to join up (cold day in hell :/) as this would wake Microsoft up PC gaming wise (snowflakes in hell ?), instead of trying to turn PC gamers PC's into companion devices for the XBox1 (seriously MS, PC gamers are not that interested in more ways to interact with their Xbox1, even those who own a Xbox1).

albino boo:

AMD are not trying to beat Intel. They long ago settled for competing in the low to mid range PC chip markets. Their aim has been value for money rather than trying to go head to head with Intel on pure power.

AMD has demonstrated that they aren't really capable of beating Intel at present, in terms of processor power.

As you said, they've settled for low to mid range. If you honestly think AMD wouldn't love to be the top dog right now, then I don't really know what to tell you.

Hell, their recent efforts with the 9370 and 9590, Vishera chips (for some damned reason), to break back into the high end market haven't panned out at all. Their initial asking price was ridiculous (For that performance?! And that amount of heat/power consumption?) and has since been utterly gutted.

Don't get me wrong. They're fine for a cheap build, but I truly do miss the competition at the top, or even mid-high, end.

Edit: Rereading this, it seems to come off a bit aggressive. ._. Not at all my intention. Lamenting consistent pricey Intel stuff, more like.

If apple will use ARM CPUs for their computers it would kill gaming for macs, which would be a shame since in the last few years game support for macs has become much more common due to Valve's initiative to add mac support on Steam.

Apple wont break parthnership. There simply is no real alternative.

maxmanrules:

Phrozenflame500:
Well that's what happens when you have a monopoly, though to be fair that's more AMD's fault then Intel's.

How's it AMD's fault? Intel's the company that pulls dodgy unethical shit over and over again. They pay companies to use only their chips, they bribe them to delay the release or to not release AMD powered laptops, they threatened to do stop bribing companies if they started working with AMD as well.

They were also allegedly part of the group of Silicon Valley companies that agreed not to try to recruit each others employees, which is effectively theft.

Furthermore, they also falsified benchmarks by creating benchmarking software, and using it to inflate results.

It's not AMDs fault that intel keeps pulling shady shit over and over again and extorting and bribing companies so that they don't use AMD.

Its AMDs fault for doing fuck all in their Processor technology.

Intel has doubled its IPC while AMD hasnt changed it in a decade.
Intel has 22nm dyes and are going for 14 nm ones. AMD is stuck at 32nm.

AMD is basically stuck in 2008 and attempting to solve all problems by "just throw more cores into it". It, obviously, fails to solve real problems.

you really cant bribe people to use your CPUs. especially when they are the more expensive ones.

Also you speak as if AMD hasnt pulled its share of shady stuff.

Smooth Operator:

Which can plainly never be done, AMD is 1/100th the size of Intel and they are 1/100th the size of Nvidia yet they are expected to keep up with both (surpass them even). They haven't got the money to throw at every tasty developer and carve themselves a performance exclusivity, you need lots of spare cash for that nonsense.

Or, as in the case of Watch Doge, they are invited to develop for performance and instead decides to throw a public temper tantrum. Its hardly Nvidias fault that AMD sucks at working with developers. Not that Nvidia is that great either nowadays. Disabling Nvidia exclusive features in Dieing Light almost doubles the framerate.

LostGryphon:
Remember when AMD was the top dog in gaming?

Ah...halcyon days, indeed. Getting a bit tired of Intel's persistent dominance in the market. AMD's really been dropping the ball for the past, what, decade now?

Last time i favored AMD CPU over Intel CPU was 2003, so yeah, a decade indeed. I really would like to see AMD get better, it would make Intel and Nvidia push the limit more in return because lately they seem to have slowed down due to lack of competition.

LostGryphon:

AMD has demonstrated that they aren't really capable of beating Intel at present, in terms of processor power.

As you said, they've settled for low to mid range. If you honestly think AMD wouldn't love to be the top dog right now, then I don't really know what to tell you.

Hell, their recent efforts with the 9370 and 9590, Vishera chips (for some damned reason), to break back into the high end market haven't panned out at all. Their initial asking price was ridiculous (For that performance?! And that amount of heat/power consumption?) and has since been utterly gutted.

Don't get me wrong. They're fine for a cheap build, but I truly do miss the competition at the top, or even mid-high, end.

Edit: Rereading this, it seems to come off a bit aggressive. ._. Not at all my intention. Lamenting consistent pricey Intel stuff, more like.

I know AMD isn't trying to be top dog, last time they tried they lost money for two straight years and causing the CEO to be fired. Intel have the brand image and the supplier contracts in place and AMD haven't got the money to compete. Personally I put the 9370, 9590, and Vishera chips in the mid range because they are there or thereabouts with the i5 not the i7.

ASnogarD:
I actually hope AMD's Mantle API gets some serious purchase into the market and manages to convince nVidia to join up (cold day in hell :/)

That is a terrible idea, the only reason AMD started this nonsense is because Nvidia is pushing exclusive features into games so they will always have a better footing.
Mantle was made to run for AMD and AMD only, if it takes off Nvidia sure as fuck won't start playing the other guys game, they will double down on theirs and make even more radically hardware dependent games... wouldn't take much for the PC market to start getting it's own hardware exclusives.

Smooth Operator:

ASnogarD:
I actually hope AMD's Mantle API gets some serious purchase into the market and manages to convince nVidia to join up (cold day in hell :/)

That is a terrible idea, the only reason AMD started this nonsense is because Nvidia is pushing exclusive features into games so they will always have a better footing.
Mantle was made to run for AMD and AMD only, if it takes off Nvidia sure as fuck won't start playing the other guys game, they will double down on theirs and make even more radically hardware dependent games... wouldn't take much for the PC market to start getting it's own hardware exclusives.

From my understanding its a common interface API which even MS has taken part of (and put into DX12), and nVidia was invited to participate in developing along with the OpenGL crowd, it isn't a case of AMD coding it all and everyone else has to toe the line (like DX).

nVidia would have more benefits working with AMD to make this common interface than working with MS and DX, MS after all has a massive conflict of interest regarding PC as a gaming platform whereas nVidia and AMD rely on PC being considered a valid platform.

Strazdas:
Or, as in the case of Watch Doge, they are invited to develop for performance and instead decides to throw a public temper tantrum. Its hardly Nvidias fault that AMD sucks at working with developers.

Yeah those bastards at AMD, can't even afford to co-develop all major titles. Barely hanging on to their company after having taken in ATI at it's breaking point and shortly there after loosing their only production facility, now renting that space at the good graces of a Saudi billionaire.
Can't even take their time to develop everyone else's stuff, what idiots...

Smooth Operator:

Strazdas:
Or, as in the case of Watch Doge, they are invited to develop for performance and instead decides to throw a public temper tantrum. Its hardly Nvidias fault that AMD sucks at working with developers.

Yeah those bastards at AMD, can't even afford to co-develop all major titles. Barely hanging on to their company after having taken in ATI at it's breaking point and shortly there after loosing their only production facility, now renting that space at the good graces of a Saudi billionaire.
Can't even take their time to develop everyone else's stuff, what idiots...

A lot of the people that get angry at Nvidia don't seem to understand that Nvidia are not "bribing" developers they are just offering some tangible benefits that are attractive for them, Nvidias gameworks are to AAA developers what the Unity engine and assets are to indies.

It allows them to integrate features and graphical FX quickly and cheaply, cutting costs will always be attractive to developers. Its not like AMD didn't try the same, Nvidias features are often more attractive due to their ubiquitous and commonly (overly?) used nature. A fire effect will always be more desirable than a fancy hair effect in most cases, especially when the hardware can already do fancy object physics natively in the first place.

They'd be dumb to do it, but if anyone has the money to, it's Apple

I find it quite hilarious that anyone here thinks Intel even cares about Apple. I would guess that products that are sold to consumers are an extremely small portion of Intel's revenue. Intel has been working government/private contracts for years that are way more advanced then anything a consumer will ever use. The only reason Intel got involved with Apple was for public perception, so people would be like "oooh, Intel makes chips for Apple, they must be successful". This is the main difference between Intel and AMD. Intel treats the consumer market as an after thought, because they are working with much more advanced technology for other entities, whereas the consumer market is all AMD has.

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