The Rise And Fall Of Intel, and The Potential Turnaround Of The Decade
Moore’s Law states that the number of transistors on a microchip doubles about every two years, though the cost of computers becomes half. Another tenet of Moore’s Law says that the growth of microprocessors is exponential.
This observation was made in 1965 by Gordon E. Moore, the co-founder of Intel, which became known as Moore’s law.
Moore went forward to co-found Intel, with a vision to create a company that would reflect his belief in continuous innovation.
While Moore’s law is still valid for the development of microprocessors, it’s no longer valid for the development of Intel.
Intel Corporation, more frequently referred to as Intel, is an American technology company with its headquarters based in California. It is the top revenue-producing semiconductor chip manufacturer in the world, and also one of the developers of the x86 instruction sets used in most computers worldwide.
Along with producing microprocessors, embedded processors, flash memory, graphics chips, network interface controllers, and motherboard chipsets, Intel also produces additional computer and communication-related products.
Intel continues to be a big participant in the technology sector and was instrumental in the growth of the personal computer industry in the 1980s and 1990s. In terms of revenue, Intel is currently one of the biggest and most valuable semiconductor chip manufacturers in the world and a Fortune 500 corporation.
A Little Bit Of History behind Intel
On a hot summer day in the middle of May 1967, Robert Noyce was mowing his lawn when Gordon Moore dropped by to discuss the state of their current jobs at Fairchild Semiconductor, where Mr. Noyce had co-invented the integrated circuit. As their conversation continued, they started talking about the possibility of a new industry.
On July 18, 1968, they started the company under the name NM Electronics (or MN Electronics), but before the end of the month, they had switched to Intel, which stood for Integrated Electronics. They had to purchase the name’s trademark rights since the hotel chain Intelco had already registered “Intel” as a trademark.
Noyce and Moore founded Intel with the goal of creating a new type of semiconductor memory called dynamic random-access memory (DRAM).
The company, however, swiftly grew beyond this initial area of focus and started creating microprocessors, which serve as the central processing units (CPUs) that control computers and other devices.
The Intel 4004 was the first microprocessor introduced by Intel in the year 1971, and it powered the first personal computers. The Intel 8008 and Intel 8080, which were utilized in the first commercially successful computers like the Altair 8800, came afterwards in 1972 and 1974 respectively.
The IBM PC and its clones utilised Intel’s 80286 and 80386 processors, which were developed in the 1980s and quickly established the standard for personal computers. The Pentium range of processors, introduced by Intel in the 1990s, saw widespread use in servers and personal computers.
In terms of revenue, Intel is currently one of the biggest and most valuable semiconductor chip manufacturers in the world and a Fortune 500 company. It is recognized for its invention and leadership in the creation of microprocessors and other related technologies, and it is still a significant participant in the technological sector.
Fall From Grace: Why is Intel Falling Behind?
Intel had been leading the computer processor for many decades. However, in recent years, Intel has fallen far out of the competition. Intel’s fall from grace is due to a variety of factors, including the rise of mobile devices, heightened rivalry from competing companies like AMD and Qualcomm, and internal issues at Intel.
There are a few key reasons why Intel has fallen behind in the market in recent years:
While there are multiple reasons behind this including manufacturing delays and changing leadership, the main reason behind this is complacency.
Slow adoption of 10 nm nodes
While the industry moved on to the 10nm process, Intel was stuck on the 14nm process for over six years due to multiple delays in the development of 10nm nodes. This delay allowed AMD to gain ground in the market, as the company was able to launch its own 7nm processors before Intel
Competition from AMD and other companies
Increased competition from other businesses is another element leading to Intel’s decline. Due to the success of its Zen architecture-based processor launches in recent years, AMD, Intel’s primary adversary, has increased its market share. Many customers have been drawn to these CPUs because they provide good performance at a cheaper price than Intel’s options. Qualcomm has also entered the PC processor market, putting even more pressure on Intel.
Apple’s shift from Intel to their in-house M1 chips amid a global chip shortage was definitely a very big blow to Intel as well.
From The Ashes Rises The Phoenix: Intel’s Potential Turnaround
2021 Resurgence of PC
After a 10-year slump, the PC industry had a resurgence last year, when sales grew 15% to 341M units, the highest numbers since 2012. Currently, there are a total of 1.4B active windows devices worldwide. The Windows 11 hardware requirement is helping to get sales even higher up. Moreover, new gaming Chromebooks are getting released with the new 12th Gen intel processors.
Intel 12th Gen CPUs
Intel 12th Gen is based on the alder lake architecture (intel 7 node) and introduced the big.LITTLE method where there are performance cores and efficiency cores to be more powerful and power efficient than ever. The new alder lake processors bring support for PCIe gen 5 and DDR5 RAM support.
These new gen processors are so future oriented that microsoft had to release windows 11 even though they had said there won’t be anymore windows versions after windows 10. Windows 11 has been designed from the ground up to utilize the performance and efficiency cores. Alder lake processors also bring a refreshing new look with a bigger integrated heat spreader (IHS) and a much cooler looking bundled stock cooler (laminar RM1 And RH1). They also require the new LGA1700 socket. Alder lake’s fastest cpu so far is the i9 12900 KS and their core i5 lineup has after a long time brought back the i5 superiority in gaming for its budget friendliness and performance. The i5 12400 is the best budget gaming chip according to many well known reviewers.
New ARC GPU Lineup
After years of including integrated graphics, Intel has finally began producing dedicated GPUs for the market. They announced their new ARC graphics division and disclosed plans to ship more than four million discrete GPUs this year.
ARC Alchemist is based on the TSMC N6 node. It will be available in up to 512 vector units, 4096 shader cores and 16GB GDD6 memory. This line of graphics promises to compete with RTX 3060 Ti or RX 6700. The two Arc Alchemist GPU dies are covering three different product families, the 700, 500 and 300 series. The first letter also represents the family, so A770 stands for Alchemist, and future Battlemage parts could be called Arc B770.
The few desktop GPUs unveiled so far in the ARC lineup are Arc A770, A750, A580 and A380. The budget card Arc A380 is already available on the market and Arc A770 (the one trying to compete with RTX 3060) will launch on 12th October.
As a result of a number of factors, including the growth of mobile devices, greater competition from businesses like AMD and Qualcomm, and internal problems at the corporation, Intel has lagged behind in recent years.
However, despite, Intel is still a market leader in processors and has made an attempt to change with the times.
The company has recently made considerable investments in research and development.
Furthermore, Intel has made plans to switch to a 3nm manufacturing method, which would aid the business in regaining its competitive edge.
Intel is advancing their production line to be ready for the future requirement of super advanced processors based on even tinier nodes.
Competitors like TSMC and AMD won’t back down so Intel needs to keep pushing to remain relevant in the future.