January 23, 2013
Intel To Shift Business Away From Desktop Motherboards
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
REVISION (January 24, 2013): The company has asked us to stress that this will not affect their Enterprise Platforms and Services division (EPSD).
Intel Spokesperson Dan Snyder confirmed the news to PCWorld yesterday, saying they will begin killing off their desktop motherboard business when their next Haswell motherboards begin shipping.
“We disclosed internally today that Intel´s Desktop Motherboard Business will begin slowly ramping down over the course of the next three years,” reads a press statement from Intel.
“The internal talent and experience of twenty years in the boards business“¦is being redistributed to address emerging new form factors.”
Intel has also said that they will be maintaining their server motherboard and server systems (integrated board, chassis, and accessories) business. The company has asked us to stress that this will not affect their Enterprise Platforms and Services division (EPSD).
Intel will continue making motherboards for other form factors, such as the aforementioned Haswell motherboard for ultrabooks. The company will also make the motherboards for their recently announced 4-inch by 4-inch PC, NUC (Next Unit of Computing) as well as all-in-one computers. Intel will also allow other computer manufacturers to license some of their designs for use in their own motherboards as well as work with these OEMs to help them develop the next generation of motherboards.
Intel began shipping their first boards in 1993 as they increased their CPU business. Before they began shipping their own boards, Intel would ship CPUs without any motherboard support. The company essentially began shipping their own motherboards as a way to sell more CPUs.
Intel´s announcement carries with it several ramifications and is being seen as a sure sign that desktop computers are standing on their last legs. The company has often struggled to keep up with other Asian suppliers in the desktop motherboard market. This decision is a way in which the company is streamlining their offerings and services and opting to stay on top if the new emerging market.
There´s also the fact that Intel has been making a very strong push into mobile computing lately. As it stands, Intel chips can be found in 7 smartphones and has already begun supplying chips to power tablets.
This decision from Intel doesn´t immediately affect the end user. For instance, anyone looking to build their own PC still have the option to choose a motherboard from said Asian suppliers, such as Asus or Gigabyte. However, PC World mentions that lower-end desktop boards may soon begin shipping with soldered-in CPUs. Such a move could be harmful to the hobbyist who prefers to build their own desktop PC. Even as this market is shrinking, PC World claims it will be a few years before hobbyists are completely left out in the cold.
In the future, however, users will be given more options when it comes to buying their mobile devices. Intel hasn´t been shy about their line of ultrabook computers, and it seems they´ll be just as excited to provide the processors in your favorite smartphones or even 4-by-4 computing cube.