Intel to Launch Core i “Haswell” Platform in “Cautious Volumes” Because of USB 3.0 Issues – Analyst

Intel to Slowdown Ramp of Core i “Haswell” Platform Before New Chipset Stepping Is Ready

by Anton Shilov
03/13/2013 | 11:56 PM

Although Intel Corp. is on track to introduce its next-generation Core i-series “Haswell” microprocessors for desktops and notebooks in June, the company will limit the amount of microprocessors and mainboards on the market because of the recently transpired glitch with USB 3.0 before it fixes the issue. A financial analyst believes that delay of strong volume ramp of Haswell will further negatively impact PC market.

 

“Haswell for desktop (Denlow platform) looks set to launch with cautious volume in June using the faulty C1 stepping, and then to see a stronger ramp once the glitch is worked out. Still, this is more than we had hoped for in June. Caution in Ivy Bridge units still likely to constrain gross margin for Intel and contacts point to August as the more significant launch period,” said JoAnne Feeney, an analyst with Longbow Research, in a note to clients, reports Tech Trader Daily.

Earlier this month it was reported that Intel began to inform its partners that when a PC system with Core i-series “Haswell” and 8-series chipset inside wakes from S3 sleep mode, it experiences issues with devices connected through USB 3.0. Intel seemingly defines the issue only as a nuisance for end users, as there would be no serious unpleasant consequences, such as data loss. A quick fix for the problem, which may result in blank PDF pages or failure to resume playback, is already known: a restart of applications. In order to solve the issues with USB 3.0, a new chipset revision is required.


LGA1150 socket for Intel Core i-series 4000-family "Haswell" microprocessors. Image by Lab51.ro web-site.

At present it is completely unclear when Intel intends to release a new revision of its 8-series chipsets with corrected USB 3.0 operations. Given the fact that Intel reportedly wants to limit the amount of platforms with potential glitches and slows down the volume ramp up of the Core i-series 4000-family chips, the company needs to release the new chipset revision rather sooner than later. However, even if Intel already has the new chipset revision at hands, it must test and validate it and only then put it to mass production. In theory, Intel’s partners should be able to start shipping mainboards powered by the new core-logic sets towards the end of summer.

“Look for a slow Haswell ramp as last year’s inventory build, following a surprisingly weak 2H, leads the industry to stick with the safer Ivy Bridge platform (socket compatible with Sandy Bridge, unlike Haswell) and for Haswell to make up less than 50% of desktop CPU shipments even in Q4 2013,” added Ms. Feeney.