Chip maker giant Intel has seen its kingdom slowly shrinking from the combined onslaught of ARM on the mobile side and AMD’s resurrection on the PC side. While it still has some things to boast about over its long-time rival, the one thing can’t claim is having a superior graphics solution the way AMD has ATI. At SIGGRAPH, Intel is reminding PC makers and users that it won’t be the status quo for too long. It also inadvertently reminded them that it’s not the first time Intel tried to come up with a discrete GPU of its own.
While Intel is arguably great at CPUs, its GPUs have never really impressed. Although it has considerably improved since the Iris generation, they are pretty much used as a fallback on desktops and a necessary evil on laptops and tablets that couldn’t afford to put in an NVIDIA or AMD Radeon chip inside. And it’s not that Intel didn’t try, but almost all of its attempts at a serious graphics card product ended up in failure.
Fortunately for Intel fans, the company hasn’t given up the way it has thrown in the towel for smartphones and IoT. Preempting NVIDIA’s big Turing-centric announcements, Intel uploaded a short video touting its experience in graphics via its CPUs and teasing that its next discrete graphics card is just two years away.
Naturally, it’s all a bunch of marketing statements at this point. Intel did hire ex-AMD Chief Architect Raja Koduri last year to work exactly on this project, so it does have something to back those claims up. Then again, it hardly lacks the manpower even back then.
If Intel does manage to successfully pull it off, it could gain a substantial advantage over at least AMD (that won’t help it much when it comes to ARM). It could definitely change the landscape of ultraportable notebooks, convertibles, and 2-in-1 detachables when the same graphics technology gets integrated into IGPs. It could, however, also start off another series of complaints and investigations on how Intel would be using its favored position in the CPU market to push its GPU in and push its rivals out.