Dead chip walking: IBM's Itanium trash talk

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Ashlee Vance writing at The Register today brings us news that IBM is stepping up its rhetoric against rival HP

“The end of life for Itanium will occur in the next five years,” IBM VP Scott Handy told us, during an interview here in Austin, Texas. “(HP) will have to announce some kind of transition.”

Oh, and Sun, too

Historically, Sun has long sold far more Unix boxes than rivals, using its higher volumes to justify the in-house production of UltraSPARC chips. But Handy thinks that Sun’s x86 business is cutting into those volumes, making UltraSPARC, like Itanium, a doubtful long-term proposition.

I’m Itanium agnostic, but I think its a little early for IBM to be throwing stones, what with its glass house and all.

Sun and Intel have bet on chips that are built to handle highly threaded software; IBM’s gear emphasizes the more classical heavyweight single thread with faster clock. Both will survive in the market for a while, but in a few years IBM may be seeing the business end of some of the rocks it’s throwing at HP and Intel now.