Intel and Microsoft have set up a point-based channel incentive programme to get Intel’s Technology Provider partners to upgrade the 600 million PCs in use today that are five years old or older to the new Skylake-Windows 10 platform.
Dubbed the Accelerate Your Business initiative, North American custom builders selling Windows 10-Skylake systems will be rewarded with the new programme, available through Intel distributors.
Under the deal, custom builders in North America can earn points when they purchase Intel sixth-generation Core i5 or Core i7 components and Windows 10 Pro.
Partners must be active Gold or Platinum Intel Technology Providers. The promotion is valid until June 30.
According to Intel, the initiative will also include training, collateral and resource kits for reseller partners to help showcase the benefits of refreshing PCs.
Intel is expected to announce the news at its Intel Solutions Summit later this week. It is is not clear if the programme will be rolled out to its UK partners at the same time.
The dark satanic rumour mill has manufactured a hell on earth yarn claiming that that the silicon monster Intel is about to drop a clutch of Skylake desktop chips in August.
The rumour is based on the idea that every year Intel holds its Developers Forum in Mid-September but for reasons known only to the Gods has decided to change the date to Mid-August.
Fudzilla is certain that Intel plans to launch the desktop Skylake-S between August and October, while the production of dual-core and quad-core Skylake parts will start between June and July.
Skylake-S will launch as an unlocked desktop processor that will have TDPs from 65W to 95 W, but there will also be some 35W parts for All-in-One computers coming time (presumably in time fo Apple’s new iMacs).
For Fudz’ prediction to work, Broadwell 65W parts will have to be here in June and be announced at Computex. This will mean that the top Core i7 5775R SKU has a base clock of 3.3GHz, with a max turbo frequency of 3.8GHz, 6MB of cache, DDR3L 1600 MHz support and Iris PRO 6200 graphics.
Intel’s current Core i7 4790K is based on Haswell refresh core and it works at 4GHz and am 8MB cache, as well as Intel HD Graphics 4600. The Core i7 4790K has a TDP of 88W which is significantly more than 65W.
For Intel to make much impact with Skylight it will have to launch a Core i7 5770K variant that will works faster than the Core i7 4790K.
It also seems that Intel will go back on its word and bring in a new socket set based around 1364 pins. Intel was fond of saying that that Skylake will use the same LGA 1150 socket and this has lead some to suspect that there will be a socket 1150 version and an LGA 1364 version of the Skylake-S.
The dark satanic rumour mill has manufactured a hell on earth yarn that AMD’s next-generation high-performance micro-architecture code-named “Zen” might have borrowed a few ideas from Intel.
The first central processing units to use “Zen” for client PCs will be the code-named “Summit Ridge” chip that is expected to feature up to eight cores, a DDR4 memory controller, a PCI Express 3.0 controller and up to 95W thermal design power. The chip will use 14nm FinFET process technology by either GlobalFoundries or Samsung Electronics.
WccfTech claims AMD will return to its traditional practice of introducing server processors powered by the latest microarchitectures first and then follow with chips for client PCs.
Without providing any details, the report claims that the new architecture features certain technologies found in the upcoming Intel “Skylake” processors. We are not sure how AMD could do this without a major court case, but what it could do is implement x86/x87 extensions, enhancements as well as various new instructions introduced by Intel in its central processing units.
Many official and semi-official revelations indicate that Skylight Intel will support AVX 3.2 (512-bit instructions), SHA extensions (SHA-1 and SHA-256, secure hash algorithms), MPX (memory protection extensions), ADX (multi-precision add-carry instruction extensions) and other innovations.
If AMD does run AVX 3.2, it will have to come up with a new floating-point unit (FPU) to run 512-bit instructions. AMD’s FPU currently features two 128-bit FMAC (fused multiply–add capability) pipelines that can be unified into one large 256-bit-wide unit if one of the integer cores dispatches an AVX instruction.
What this means is that if AMD’s “Zen” supports AVX 3.2, will need an all-new FPU that will be different from Bulldozer and will need a fully-fledged 512-bit FPU. Otherwise, execution of 512-bit AVX 3.2 instructions will be slower than an asthmatic ant with a heavy load of shopping.
It is starting to look like we will not see Intel’s new Skylake CPU until the Intel Developer Forum on August 15.
It had been expected that the sixth-gen announcements and corresponding 100-series chipsets would start to appear in the second quarter. But it appears that Intel was just talking about the lowest-end, Core M-branded members of the family.
A plausible recently leaked product roadmap puts both the mobile Skylake-U and desktop Skylake-S on the fast track to third quarter debuts between July and September.
This would suggest that everything is gearing up for a big IDF event.
This is bad news for the likes of Microsoft and hardware manufacturers who look to the release of a new chip to boost PC sales. There is some evidence that some buyers are refusing to upgrade until Skylake is out.
VR-Zone has its paws on a document that not just corroborates the August unveil deadline, but also hints at the aggressive TDPs of some of the roster’s members. The top-of-the-line quad-core K CPU will blow 95 watts of maximum heat, but there will be more energy-efficient 65 and 35W variants.
Of course there are some fears that Intel will make the same mistake that it did with Broadwell which was so late some of us dubbed it the Godot chip.
The arrival of Windows
10 and the introduction of 14 nanometre microprocessors are unlikely to stimulate much demand for PCs in 2015.
That’s the view of Digitimes
– which has interviewed sources in the supply chain that make kit using the software and components.
Windows 10 is delayed – it’s not now expected to ship until the August at the earliest, and will make use of a future 14 nanometre CPU from Intel which is codenamed “Skylake”.
But the wire thinks that in 2015 only 200 million PCs will ship this year – with smartphones and tablets continuing to erode market share.
The manufacturers in Taiwan are more update about Apple based PCs rather than their Windows based cousins and are anticipating that while enterprises may decide to upgrade.
Windows 8 has triggered a distinct lack of excitement in the marketplace, with many enterprises hanging on to Windows 7 systems for dear life.
Windows 10 is expected to look a lot more like Windows 7 than Windows 8.x.
Word on the street is that Skylake processors may be delayed.
Intel has been promising that Skylight will be in developers paws early 2015 ahead of shipping “by the second half of the year.”
Digitime’s Joanne Chen claims that Skylake will be held back so as not to dent sales of Broadwell-based notebooks.
The report claims that Intel has set the RTM schedule for the Skylake to the 37-47th weeks of 2015 which is the end of August to the end of October.
The later schedule, Chen claims, would damage the release of Windows 10 notebook sales, because Skylake-based models will not be able to reach retail until late September.
“Windows 10-based notebooks are already facing many negative factors that could impact their shipments in 2015: most enterprises are expected to finish their PC replacement by the end of 2014 after Microsoft terminated support for Windows XP; Microsoft will offer free upgrade to Windows 10 for existing Windows 8/8.1 notebooks; and Windows 10 lacks attractive features,” Chen wrote.
While it is possible that Intel has allowed itself room in September for a later ship date without exposing itself to accusations of breaking its promises, the matter of Windows10 is important. The Skylake delay is expected to worsen Windows 10-based notebooks prospects, and may in turn weaken the notebook market’s performance in the second half of 2015.
A report said that sales of notebooks using Microsoft Windows 10 are likely to be hit because Intel will be tardy releasing an appropriate chip.
Digitimes Research said that the Intel Skylake microprocessor is supposed to be ready at the beginning of the third quarter in 2015 but will probably not hit the streets until the end of next year or even 2016.
The news will plunge Microsoft into the depths of despondency. It is already taking a hit because uptake of the notoriously shabby Windows 8.x isn’t going to plan.
Windows 10 is supposed to be the summum bonum – that is to say it will work properly because there won’t be a Windows 9.
Digitimes Research estimates that Intel’s delays won’t make the acceptance of Windows 10 any easier and it appears the alliance between Microsoft and Intel is crumbling.
Intel could not be contacted for comment at press time.
The report is here.
Broadwell is set to be the chip that Intel does not want to talk about as it enters next year with two chip line-ups.
Intel says that both Broadwell and Skylake will be in the shops in the same year, something the chip maker has managed to avoid doing before, with very good reason.
Skylake is supposed to be better technology, but having it so close to Broadwell will mean that punters will wait for it rather than buying something out-of-date. They will not have long to wait. Broadwell will ship in the first quarter next year, but in the second half next year, users will be able to buy PCs with processors based on the newer Skylake architecture.
This sorry state of affairs has come about because Broadwell has been cursed with delayed chip shipments which lead to delayed manufacturing. The world should have Broadwell machines already, but they are still not around.
Intel appears to have decided to put the whole mess behind it and move to Skylake as planned.
Chipzilla claims that Skylake chips will lead to the biggest PC innovations in the last 10 years. Skylake will bring wireless charging and data transfers, and also a significant increase in performance, battery life and power efficiency. At IDF Intel did not hardly bother showing off any Broadwell chips.
On the plus side, the transition to Skylake will also lead to Intel dumping Broadwell processors, which could help cut laptop prices by year end. That could benefit customers looking for low-cost laptops and prop up PC shipment volumes.