Korean super may bail on AMD, switch to Intel

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Last week, The Inquirer’s Nebojsa Novakovic reported that AMD is losing its spot as the processor vendor in a Sun Microsystems supercompter for the Korean Institute for Science and Technology Information (KISTI). According to him, because of the Barcelona production delays, Sun is looking to dump the original system spec, which called for 2.5+ GHz Barcelona quad-core CPUs.

Writes Novakovic:

[T]he last I heard recently was Sun staff were busily replacing AMD with new 45 nm Intel specs, and the Koreans will now [be using] Intel “eight-brain chips”…

Apparently AMD responded, denying that they were out of the running. Novakovic didn’t appear to be convinced though.  In a follow-up piece, he suggested that AMD may already be too late. (Since Sun and KISTI never revealed the terms of their agreement, it’s difficult to know the true story.)

As another data point, in an article published on Thursday, InformationWeek is reporting that AMD is ahead of schedule to deliver bug-free Barcelona processors and will start shipping the chips as early as the end of March. None of this may matter to the Koreans, who seem to be after faster CPUs than the revamped Barcelona parts will offer. Stay tuned.