Partners: AMD, Intel Alliance For Enthusiast Laptop Chip Could Mean Trouble For Nvidia

System builders say a partnership announced by chip rivals Intel and AMD is a win-win for everyone, except Nvidia.

Intel and AMD on Monday said they are pairing up to help enthusiast laptops become thinner, lighter and “deliver a premium experience” with a new chip that includes technology from both companies.

"I believe this can only be good for everybody but Nvidia. It also really puts the focus on who AMD and Intel really consider to be their competition," said Randy Copeland, president and CEO of Velocity Micro, a systems builder and Intel partner based in Richmond, Va.

[Related: Intel Pairs Up With AMD To Develop Powerhouse Chips For Thinner, Lighter Enthusiast Laptops]

The new eighth-generation Core processor will pair Intel’s mobile-targeted Core H-series processor, second-generation high-bandwidth memory and an AMD Radeon Technologies Group discrete graphics chip in a single processor package.

The new chip will reduce the silicon footprint to less than half that of standard discrete components on a motherboard, creating more flexibility for OEMs to add features such as new board layouts, cooling solutions or increased battery life.

The new chip design also helps Intel expand technology called EMIB, a smart intelligent bridge enabling heterogeneous silicon to transmit information in close proximity, enabling faster and more efficient products in smaller sizes.

"I’ve long thought that Intel’s EMIB bridge was a fascinating evolution in technology, but I never thought that these two rivals would team up in this manner," said Andrew Kretzer, director of sales and marketing at Bold Data Technology, Fremont, Calif.-based system builder.

Nvidia has tackled the PC market with its GPU forte, selling its GeForce chips to target desktops that need immersive 3D graphics, stunning picture clarity or HD video. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company did not respond to a request for comment on the new chip by publication time.

For Intel’s part, teaming up with AMD will help the chip company match this level of graphics capability to laptops – particularly as enthusiast use cases become a bigger function for the PC market.

Kent Tibbils, vice president of marketing at ASI, a Fremont, Calif.-based Intel system builder, said the deal is a "good thing for both AMD and Intel, but most importantly it’s of great value to the consumer, so that makes it a win-win-win all around."

"Seeing any of those three companies collaborate on any project would be surprising, but I do think there are benefits to this partnership for Intel, AMD and maybe most importantly the consumer," he said. "For Intel, they get to expand the capabilities or usages of their EMIB technology so they may discover other markets where this can be used to bring more powerful PC performance with greater graphics capabilities and long battery life to different platforms... For AMD, it gives them an opportunity to crack into the notebook market that has been dominated on the high-end by Nvidia so it gives them access to what for them will be almost like a new market. For the consumer, it means better performing devices with higher end graphics and long battery life in thinner and lighter products." 

Intel and AMD did not reveal further details about their new chip - including specs, price, and release date. 

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