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Moore's Law slows and so does Intel, adding a third 14-nm 'Kaby Lake' chip to roadmap

Mark Hachman | July 20, 2015
Intel said Thursday that it will add a third 14-nm microprocessor, Kaby Lake, to its roadmap, disrupting the steady tick-tock pace of the PC market as Moore's Law slows down.

Intel is generally expected to be months if not years ahead of competitors like AMD and Samsung in terms of manufacturing technology. Krzanich said he believes Intel will hold that lead. By 2017 he said, he still expects "our lead in Moore's Law will not change dramatically."

"We said let's be very predictable and do the best thing for our shareholders, our customers, and our partners," Krzanich said of announcing the change. 

PC market waits with bated breath for Windows 10

The problem, of course, is that the PC market needs a boost, not a bump. Intel executives noted that PC demand tends to scale with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and that GDP growth has eroded in areas like China. Intel never "built in a boom" from the Windows 10 transition, Kraznich said.  Intel expects PCs to grow in the single digits for the remainder of this year, which isn't bad at all; Intel's strategy is to hold PC growth at least flat, while growing its data center businesses, flash memory, and the Internet of Things. And Intel did just that, increasing its Data Center Group revenue 10 percent year over year, and growing its IoT business by four percent to boot.

With a healthy enterprise business and an emerging IoT business anchoring its financials, Intel's in no danger of going under. But the PC business is increasingly looking like a loss leader--great news for consumers, but a generally lousy business for PC makers.

 

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