News Bits: Intel’s Chip Sales Plunge, Apple Sales Rise on MacBook Strength, Daewoo Enters UMPC Market

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Merom to account for 50% of Intel notebook CPUs in Q1 2007

By the first quarter of 2007, Intel plans to raise the production of its Merom to over 50% of its notebook processor shipments – dual-core, 64-bit processors in the mainstream.

Intel will also reduce the production of its current Yonah (Core Duo) CPUs in Q4 2006. By the end of 2006, the Yonah will only make up 30% of Intel’s notebook processor shipments – currently, they make up 50%. And by the end of 1H 2007, they will make up less than 10%.

Although the Merom processor is slated to be introduced by the end of July, volume production may not begin until the middle of August, and it probably won’t show up in notebooks until the end of August.

Intel expects the introduction of Windows Vista to drive up demand for 64-bit, dual-core notebooks in Q1 2007. Intel is planning to launch a Core-based Celeron M processor using 945 series chipsets in Q4 2006; this means Intel will have 64-bit offerings from the low end to the high end.

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Intel announces worst sales quarter in 4-years, stock sinking

So now stepping away from a tech view of Intel and taking a look at the business side of Intel — in a word, it’s “awful”.  If you used two words you could call it “beyond awful”.  Even though Intel appears to have a large edge on future technologies and a superior chip about to be released, that means nothing if they can’t execute on these advantages from a sales perspective.  And they’re certainly not.

Intel Corp. reported its biggest profit drop in more than four years and said it is unlikely to make its full-year forecast after losing sales to Advanced Micro Devices Inc.

The world’s largest semiconductor maker said second-quarter net income fell 57 percent to $885 million, or 15 cents a share, from $2.04 billion, or 33 cents, a year earlier. Sales dropped 13 percent to $8 billion, the bottom of Intel’s forecast, the Santa Clara, California-based company said today in a statement.

Later this year Intel announced they will begin laying off people to try to make cost cuts.

Apple ships 798,000 laptops between April and June, 60% jump from Q1

As we would expect, the jump in Apple’s sales of laptops from Q1 to Q2 was dramatic, a jump of 60% in units sold.  With the release of the MacBook in May many consumers finally pulled the trigger on a purchase of an Apple laptop they had long been awaiting.  Apple shipped a total of 798,000 notebooks and made $1.161 billion in revenue on that number.  Apple does not break out which model sold how many units, but the lower price point of the MacBook obviously would suggest its the best selling model versus the MacBook Pro.

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Windows Vista less secure than XP according to Symantec

Symantec has come out with a report and said that Windows Vista is very likely to be less secure than Windows XP is today. It has already discovered many security flaws with Vista’s networking. The new code in Vista is the problem, it says.

In the report, Symantec states:

“Microsoft has removed a large body of tried and tested code and replaced it with freshly written code, complete with new corner cases and defects. This may provide for a more stable networking stack in the long term, but stability will suffer in the short term.”

Microsoft responded to the report, and said:

“Given that Windows Vista is still in the beta stage of the development and not yet final, the claims made in this report are, at best, premature. And given the extensive work we are doing to make Windows Vista the most secure version of Windows yet, we believe the claims are also unsubstantiated.”

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New UMPC from Daewoo

South Korea-based Daewoo Lucoms has announced its first UMPC (Ultra Mobile PC) – the Solo M1. It will run a special version of Windows XP Tablet PC Edition Microsoft has developed for these devices. CPU power comes from a low-voltage, 900MHz Celeron. Other specifications include a 30GB hard drive and 512MB RAM.

WiFi, Bluetooth, integrated 1.3 megapixel picture/video camera, Ethernet, USB, and S-video are among other features. Consumers will have a choice between a GPS receiver and/or a DMB TV tuner.

The Solo M1 is expected to be around $1,050, but it is not known yet where the device will be available. More information can be found on Daewoo Lucoms website (Korean).

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Vendors getting ready to clear out Sonoma notebooks

Notebook vendors, including Acer, Dell, and HP are expected to completely clear their inventory of Sonoma notebooks by Q3. Intel requested that the manufacturers help clear out inventory on June 29th.

Acer is the first maker to start pushing low-cost Sonoma notebooks. It is looking to push its dual-core notebook lines. Dell and HP are expected to follow.

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Intel adds 3G to next-gen Centrino, Santa Rosa


Image courteosy of DailyTech

Intel’s next-generation Centrino platform, “Santa Rosa”, is packing a lot of new technology – Robson flash memory, Kedron 802.11n wireless, and the new GMA X3000 integrated graphics chip.

Yet another piece of technology has been added to Santa Rosa – optional WWAN (wireless wide-area networking) via its Windigo wireless chip. It is slated to launch in Q2 2007, and will support 3G networks.

Intel does not require Windigo, but most manufacturers will probably include it. Intel is looking to include all major wireless networking protocols into a single chip – it could reduce cost and save space on motherboards.

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