Published in PC Hardware

Broadwell won’t make it to desktop

by on17 September 2013

Haswell refresh

We have heard people talking about it but we managed to confirm it now. Intel will make Broadwell mobile only and it won’t make a desktop version like it used to before.

The desktop version of a new CPU is codenamed Haswell refresh, which gives you idea of what is coming from Intel on the desktop side. Haswell refresh is just a slightly improved and optimized Haswell, while Broadwell will hit tablets, convertibles, two-in-ones and the traditional notebook market. Intel spends a lot of time addressing this market, which has already fallen on hard times.

Our sources are telling us that Intel will do desktop chip every two years, which is a huge slow down from the current roadmap, making it much easier for AMD to grab some breathing space in the desktop segment.

This is definitely not great news for desktop enthusiasts. It will make things slower and boring on the desktop side but GPUs will still come out every year, making GPU updates for gamers look like a good way of boosting performance.

Skylake is the next Intel chip that is set to have a desktop version and it is a tock, a new architecture processor that can probably bring more performance than what you would expect from the Broadwell 14nm shrink. Skylake is 14nm and it is set to come at some point in 2015.

Typical non-desktop users won’t benefit much from new processor unless they use heavy video encoding and rendering and watching Full HD movies and even 4K movies won’t be much of a task in the future.

According to Intel’s own figures, the average PC is now more than four years old, the PC market is mature and upgrade cycles are getting longer, which explains the shift to a two-year cycle in the desktop segment.

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