INTEL & nVIDIA

5. October 2006, 22:19 | by WD Milner | Full Article |

Fueled by the recent acquisition of ATI Technologies by AMD, rumours have been circulating that Intel may be acquiring nVidia. This is a disquieting thought.

So far this is just speculation fueled by the AMD/ATI acquisition. Intel are in a different position. While acquiring nVidia is within their monetary means, it presents other problems. Intel already has a considerable part of the embedded video market and adding nVidia to its portfolio might well push it into the monopoly region of the SEC and Sherman Anti-Trust Act. Given that Intel is already fighting lawsuits and investigations into monopolistic practices, I doubt it would care to throw more fuel on the fire at the moment.

Antitrust, and video graphics considerations aside, imagine for a moment that in the war for processor market an Intel owned nVidia decided it would no longer support/produce motherboard chipsets for AMD processors? Or perhaps less than optimally performing chipsets?

No, don’t jump up in indignation right away - stop and let that idea and all it's ramifications sink in. This would leave AMD back in the bad old days when you basically had one choice for a desktop chipset, VIA. While it wasn’t the only option, it was by far the most prevalent and arguably best performing against other players such as Aladdin and SiS.

While such a move would drastically impact nVidia’s profitability in the short term, if it knocked AMD far enough back in the market it could well be worth it for Intel.

Given rumours that ATI will no longer be providing chipset components for Intel motherboards, it will be interesting to keep an eye on how this plays out in the months to come.

So far no one from Intel, nVidia, ATI or AMD has commented on the Intel/nVidia rumours.

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Categories: ,
Keywords: intel,nvidia,amd,ati,acquisition,monopoly,antitrust,graphics,motherboard,chipset

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