Although we are again not in Taipei for Computex due to travel restrictions, Intel is forging ahead with its customary Computex Keynote. This year’s keynote is being headlined by Michelle Johnston Holthaus, EVP and CRO at Intel. We are going to cover the keynote live, so please excuse typos.
Intel Innovation at Computex 2021 Keynote
Pat Gelsinger, CEO of Intel discussed how the company is addressing the chip shortage. At the time of this keynote, there is a major shortage of chips, and Intel is focusing on bringing new capacity online to meet the needs and mitigate future shortages.
Something that is interesting around Pat’s talk is that the company is discussing the key “superpowers” of Cloud, Connectivity, AI, and Intelligent edge. This week, HP posted great earnings, driven by PC sales, but there was a question of whether the best was behind for the PC market. It is interesting therefore that Pat did not highlight the PC market as a driver.
Pat also went into the Intel IDM 2.0 model that we covered in Pat Gelsinger Starts to Revamp the Intel Borg.
Lisa Spelman gave an update on the data center group’s portfolio. Something that was interesting in this slide is that Si Photonics and Intel Tofino made it to the portfolio along with Xeon, Core, Atom, Optane, Agilex, and other brands. Just before lockdown in 2020, we were able to look at the next-gen Tofino/ silicon photonics switches in Hands-on with the Intel Co-Packaged Optics and Silicon Photonics Switch. Facebook has, for example, been deploying Intel’s silicon photonics modules at scale in its data centers and seeing high reliability.
Lisa said the next-generation Xeon platform is sampling. We have heard this as well, albeit the betting odds on Sapphire Rapids hitting GA in Q1 2022 in the industry are not great (officially the target is still Q1 2022.)
The Tokyo Olympics that were delayed from 2020 to 2021 still appear to be going on, and Intel is a big sponsor of that event.
The company is discussing how it is using its technologies to track the performance of athletes. Hopefully, we get to see the Olympics this year. If you have ever been to the Olympics, it is an ultra-fun event to attend.
The company also discussed how it is focusing on 5G partnering with Taiwanese ODMs such as Foxconn and QCT.
On the PC market side, Intel discussed its new PC CPUs and how it is ramping production to meet demand.
Intel launched two new 11th Gen Core U-series CPUs that are for the mobile market.
Intel has a partnership with MediaTek for building 5G connectivity for PCs. The company is announcing the Intel 5G Solution 5000 which appears to be a M.2 5G radio connectivity solution.
The company discussed its Intel Evo platform for notebooks again. Intel is still focused on Evo v. AMD but it seems like Intel needs to focus a bit more on the M1 threat. I switched from a Core i7 Dell XPS 13 to a Macbook Pro 13 with the M1. Intel has a response with Alder Lake coming later in 2021. Intel said it has both desktop and mobile Alder Lake platforms.
Alder Lake will be a major innovation which is why we were a bit less excited about the Intel Core i9-11900K than we could have been because Alder Lake is a big change and coming relatively quickly.
Hopefully, this helps Intel push the industry forward later this year.
Overall, there was not too much for the STH server folks in this one. We will note however that the Intel 5G solution may be interesting to many of our readers. 5G in edge networking boxes can offer a higher-speed backup link via wireless. Alder Lake will also likely come to the Xeon W line at some point as has been Intel’s custom. Something that was apparent in the Intel Computex 2021 keynote is that Intel had a broader range of executives in the keynote than it typically has had during the in-person keynotes.