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Intel slugs Rambus

Poor old Rambus, Intel are contractually obligated to support Rambus' RDRAM properties with the Pentium 4, but they don't wanna..

It would seem that Intel are less than bothered about their standing with Rambus now, as despite the fact that Intel is contractually obligated to support them, they have no qualms about slagging them off in interviews with the Financial Times. In this case the slagger is Craig Barrett, an Intel Chief Executive, who goes on record as saying that Intel "made a big bet on Rambus and it did not work out" and that "in retrospect, it was a mistake to be dependent on a third party for a technology that gates your performance." Intel's history with Rambus has been unfortunate. Already the 810 and 820 chipsets have made use of Rambus but due to SDRAM's undwindling popularity the motherboard manufacturers were forced to use the Memory Translator Hub to allow the use of SDRAM. The MTH just happens to be buggy and unfavourable to most, so unless people used Rambus the 810/820 boards became a moot point. Actually, this wouldn't be the first time that Intel has said something rather uncouth about the company's relationship with Rambus. In July Intel announced that although the company was virtually married to Rambus due to the contract, it would be producing motherboard chipsets capable of operating with standard SDRAM for its Pentium 4 processor. After attempting to salvage its Rambus relationship by reworking the RDRAM core in August, it now seems almost certain that Intel is just waiting for the clock to tick down on its contract so it can escape the hindrance once and for all.

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About the Author

Tom Bramwell avatar

Tom Bramwell

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Tom worked at Eurogamer from early 2000 to late 2014, including seven years as Editor-in-Chief.

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