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Intel keeps laying into ARM

Comment Because it's a big bully
Wed Oct 22 2008, 18:25

A BLOKE FROM INTEL has been throwing things at fabless Brit chip Firm ARM.

ARM may provide the chips that power Apple's all-conquering Iphone and millions of users around the world may be showing off the device by pouring virtual beer down their throats or homing in on Google maps by spreading their fingers wide in an awkward if well-practised action.

But an obviously-miffed Intel loves taking potshots at ARM at any opportunity, mainly because ARM has chips in over a billion mobile internet devices and Intel's are in, ooh, half a dozen or so.

"The shortcomings of the Iphone are not because of Apple," Intel's director of ultra-mobile ecosystems, Pankaj Kedia, told Intel Developer Forum in Taipei, Taiwan. "The shortcomings of the Iphone have come from ARM," he said.

First up, isn't God the director of ecosystems? And how "eco" are wireless networks, Wimax and buzzing, clanking phones and the associated gadgetry? Not very, innit? Indeed, Kedia's very job description makes plain that he has no scruples and we can probably discount any utterance he makes.

Kedia went on. "The smartphone of today is not very smart," he said. "The problem they have today is they use ARM."

He added: "If you want to run full internet, you're going to have to run an Intel-based architecture."

Intel has this idea that to run the Interweb properly you need an X86-based chip. This is cobblers and it doesn't get any truer each time an Intel knob says it. But it doesn't stop them saying it.

Intel used to make ARM chips, of course, but gave up in 2006 and flogged that business to Marvell a firm it used to own if our fuzzy memory still serves us well.

Now it's been forced to get on the low-cost, low-margin bandwagon and it doesn't like it. The behemoth prefers an 80-90 per cent market share and doesn't like sniffing around the almighty ARM pit.

Expect plenty more cobblers to come. µ


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