by Martin Veitch

Intel abusive? If this is capitalist exploitation give me more

May 12, 20092 mins
IT Strategy

Intel once called AMD the Milli Vanilli of chips so I suppose it’s no surprise that AMD should jump on Intel’s bad news and turn it into its own good news.

The microprocessor number two celebrates the EC fine and judgement and says that “Intel broke the law and consumers were hurt”. I don’t know so much about the first part of that statement but I really, really, really doubt the second part. Really.

Most consumers I know feel that PCs are cheap as… well, chips. The downward spiral in PC pricing and the concurrent improvement in capabilities is, in fact, a capsule argument for the benevolent effects of the whole philosophy of capitalism. The deals now are terrific: for £250 you get a fast computer that will last you five years or more as your main work productivity tool. The same amount of money will buy you 80 pints of beer, a suit, five tickets to the football or theatre or a good meal for two in a London restaurant.

It’s the bargain du jour and it’s caused by the fact that there is very real competition throughout the PC supply chain and among makers of PCs themselves. Who knows whether Intel really hamstrung AMD — but if it did, it didn’t do so at any great cost to PC buyers.