Big Brother Belts The Brat

The announcement yesterday that Intel would use PC133 RAM to power a Willamette model sometime later next year is really no big deal. That’s been rumored for quite some time, and this is going to be a “value” Willamette system, anyway.

However, it comes on top of a whole lot of other moves by Intel which indicates that Mother Superior is finally getting fed up with the little Rambus brat.

  1. Stalling Tinma.
  2. Kissing and making up with Via and begging people to please come up with DDR chipsets for their current processors (and not saying boo when Via talks about Willamette DDR chipsets) .
  3. Going to a .13 micron chip shrinkage of the PIII to buy time for Willamette .

So what you heard yesterday wasn’t terribly important, but everything else that’s been happening put together shows that Intel is scrambling.

As I pointed out a couple months ago, Intel will not commit suicide for Rambus, and obviously
is securing alternatives to save itself. I wouldn’t be surprised if OEMs weren’t exactly breaking down the doors for RDRAM systems anytime soon, not even for Willys.

Self-preservation is always a company’s first priority. Seems blindingly obvious, but tell the Rambus Rambos that. Intel can yammer all it likes about being an Internet company, and maybe someday they will be, but the CPUs still bring home the bacon.

My question, which no one seems to be asking, is “Where’s all this DDR stuff?” For a product with no problems, the dates seem to be receding. I thought the Ali chipset announced yesterday would be out fairly shortly, but I read about demonstrations at Comdex in November.

Hmmm . . . .

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