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AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 04:38 AM EDT

AMD has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Intel in US District Court for the District of Delaware. They allege in their complaint that "for over a decade, Intel has unlawfully maintained its monopoly by engaging in a relentless, worldwide campaign to coerce customers to refrain from dealing with AMD." They say that in the past several years, Intel's conduct has become "increasingly egregious" as AMD "has achieved technological leadership in critical aspects of the microprocessor architechture."

There will be an audio conference call at noon ET for analysts and the press. It will be available for 10 days thereafter on their website, if you use RealPlayer or Microsoft MediaPlayer. Speaking of monopolies. Here's an Open Letter from Hector Ruiz, AMD Chairman, President and CEO, and you can download the complaint [PDF] from that same page.

The press release says the European Commission "has stated that it is pursuing an investigation against Intel for similar possible antitrust violations" and is cooperating with the Japanese authorities, whose Fair Trade Commission of Japan (JFTC) recently ruled that Intel has "abused its monopoly power to exclude fair and open competition, violating Section 3 of Japan's Antimonopoly Act."

Here's the meat of the press release.

*********************************

AMD FILES ANTITRUST COMPLAINT AGAINST INTEL IN U.S. FEDERAL DISTRICT COURT

Complaint Details Worldwide Coercion of Computer-Makers, System-Builders, Distributors and Retailers from Dealing with AMD
Intel's Illegal Acts Inflate Computer Prices and Limit Choices for Businesses and Consumers -

SUNNYVALE, CA - June 28, 2005 - AMD (NYSE: AMD) announced today that it filed an antitrust complaint against Intel Corporation ("Intel") yesterday in U.S. federal district court for the district of Delaware under Section 2 of the Sherman Antitrust Act, Sections 4 and 16 of the Clayton Act, and the California Business and Professions Code. The 48-page complaint explains in detail how Intel has unlawfully maintained its monopoly in the x86 microprocessor market by engaging in worldwide coercion of customers from dealing with AMD. It identifies 38 companies that have been victims of coercion by Intel - including large scale computer-makers, small system-builders, wholesale distributors, and retailers, through seven types of illegality across three continents.

"Everywhere in the world, customers deserve freedom of choice and the benefits of innovation - and these are being stolen away in the microprocessor market," said Hector Ruiz, AMD chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer. "Whether through higher prices from monopoly profits, fewer choices in the marketplace or barriers to innovation - people from Osaka to Frankfurt to Chicago pay the price in cash every day for Intel's monopoly abuses."

x86 microprocessors run the Microsoft Windows(r), Solaris and Linux families of operating systems. Even Apple(r), a pioneer of the PC and one of the industry's enduring innovators, announced that it would switch exclusively to x86 processors to run Mac OS(r) software beginning in 2006. Intel's share of this critical market currently counts for about 80 percent of worldwide sales by unit volume and 90 percent by revenue, giving it entrenched monopoly ownership and super-dominant market power.

This litigation follows a recent ruling from the Fair Trade Commission of Japan (JFTC), which found that Intel abused its monopoly power to exclude fair and open competition, violating Section 3 of Japan's Antimonopoly Act. These findings reveal that Intel deliberately engaged in illegal business practices to stop AMD's increasing market share by imposing limitations on Japanese PC manufacturers. Intel did not contest these charges.

The European Commission has stated that it is pursuing an investigation against Intel for similar possible antitrust violations and is cooperating with the Japanese authorities.

"You don't have to take our word for it when it comes to Intel's abuses; the Japanese government condemned Intel for its exclusionary and illegal misconduct," said Thomas M. McCoy, AMD executive vice president, legal affairs and chief administrative officer. "We encourage regulators around the world to take a close look at the market failure and consumer harm Intel's business practices are causing in their nations. Intel maintains illegal monopoly profits at the expense of consumers and computer manufacturers, whose margins are razor thin. Now is the time for consumers and the industry worldwide to break free from the abusive Intel monopoly."

The 48-page complaint, drafted after an intensive investigation by AMD's lead outside counsel, Charles P. Diamond of O'Melveny & Myers LLP, details numerous examples of what Diamond describes as "a pervasive, global scheme to coerce Intel customers from freely dealing with AMD to the detriment of customers and consumers worldwide." According to the complaint, Intel has unlawfully maintained its monopoly by, among other things:

*Forcing major customers such as Dell, Sony, Toshiba, Gateway, and Hitachi into Intel-exclusive deals in return for outright cash payments, discriminatory pricing or marketing subsidies conditioned on the exclusion of AMD;

*According to industry reports, and as confirmed by the JFTC in Japan, Intel has paid Dell and Toshiba huge sums not to do business with AMD.

*Intel paid Sony millions for exclusivity. AMD's share of Sony's business went from 23 percent in '02 to 8% in '03, to 0%, where it remains today.

*Forcing other major customers such as NEC, Acer, and Fujitsu into partial exclusivity agreements by conditioning rebates, allowances and market development funds (MDF) on customers' agreement to severely limit or forego entirely purchases from AMD;

*Intel paid NEC several million dollars for caps on NEC's purchases from AMD. Those caps assured Intel at least 90% of NEC's business in Japan and imposed a worldwide cap on the amount of AMD business NEC could do.

*Establishing a system of discriminatory and retroactive incentives triggered by purchases at such high levels as to have the intended effect of denying customers the freedom to purchase any significant volume of processors from AMD;

When AMD succeeded in getting on the HP retail roadmap for mobile computers, and its products sold well, Intel responded by withholding HP's fourth quarter 2004 rebate check and refusing to waive HP's failure to achieve its targeted rebate goal; it allowed HP to make up the shortfall in succeeding quarters by promising Intel at least 90% of HP's mainstream retail business.

*Threatening retaliation against customers for introducing AMD computer platforms, particularly in strategic market segments such as commercial desktop;

*Then-Compaq CEO Michael Capellas said in 2000 that because of the volume of business given to AMD, Intel withheld delivery of critical server chips. Saying "he had a gun to his head," he told AMD he had to stop buying.

*According to Gateway executives, their company has paid a high price for even its limited AMD dealings. They claim that Intel has "beaten them into 'guacamole'" in retaliation.

*Establishing and enforcing quotas among key retailers such as Best Buy and Circuit City, effectively requiring them to stock overwhelmingly or exclusively, Intel computers, artificially limiting consumer choice;

*AMD has been entirely shut out from Media Markt, Europe's largest computer retailer, which accounts for 35 percent of Germany's retail sales.

*Office Depot declined to stock AMD-powered notebooks regardless of the amount of financial support AMD offered, citing the risk of retaliation.

*Forcing PC makers and tech partners to boycott AMD product launches or promotions;

*Then-Intel CEO Craig Barrett threatened Acer's Chairman with "severe consequences" for supporting the AMD Athlon 64(tm) launch. This coincided with an unexplained delay by Intel in providing $15-20M in market development funds owed to Acer. Acer withdrew from the launch in September 2003.

*Abusing its market power by forcing on the industry technical standards and products that have as their main purpose the handicapping of AMD in the marketplace.

*Intel denied AMD access to the highest level of membership for the Advanced DRAM technology consortium to limit AMD's participation in critical industry standard decisions that would affect its business.

*Intel designed its compilers, which translate software programs into machine-readable language, to degrade a program's performance if operated on a computer powered by an AMD microprocessor.


  


AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court | 324 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
Off Topic (OT) here
Authored by: Naich on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 05:54 AM EDT
You know the score

[ Reply to This | # ]

Corractions here
Authored by: Naich on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 05:56 AM EDT
If any

[ Reply to This | # ]

AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Greebo on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 06:02 AM EDT
It's fairly common knowledge in the Semiconductor Industry that Intel play these kinds of games, although whether they were legal or illegal was always open to debate.

I'm surprised a suit like this hasn't been bought before. The last company i worked for did business with Intel for a short time, but had to quit after Intel pressured them to drop the price so much they were making a loss. The threat then was losing future Intel business.

All perfectly legal, but a good example of Intel weilding the big stick.

Greebo.

---
PJ has permission to use my posts for commercial use.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Bad news for AMD
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 06:38 AM EDT
I mean, I agree with all of their assertions, but you don't file these suits
unless you're already in trouble. Intel has been careful not to strangle the
competition completely, but it looks like they've gone a little too far and now
AMD fears for its survival.

[ Reply to This | # ]

AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 07:05 AM EDT
That Intel have been playing these games isn't a surprise to me, I've heard
rumours and seen comments for years. What is a bit of a surprise is the sheer
scale of "dodgy dealing" that is suggested by this complaint. I'm
tempted to conduct a personal boycott of Intel chips (small though such a move
would be).

My current main computer is an Acer Aspire 1502LMi, an AMD Athlon 64 based
machine and it works perfectly and runs a lot cooler than my previous
Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo D P4 based computer which got too hot and has even cut out
due to overheating when doing heavy duty work. I think any future main computer
is likely to be AMD based (preferably WITHOUT Microsoft tax).

I am currently looking at getting a smaller, more portable (sub 3kg weight -
perferably closer to 2kg or less) for general lugging around. I'd been looking
at the Centrino based machines (because they seem to offer the very best battery
life) but perhaps I'll start looking more at what is on offer in the Sempron, or
even the new Turion 64, based machines - I'm more than happy with my Acer and
they seem to have a number of such machines in their range.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Does this mean anything for WinTel monopoly?
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 07:06 AM EDT
Windows = Monopoly (DOJ case)
Intel = Monopoly (new DOJ case, it seems)

Windows + Intel (WinTel) = SuperMonopoly ??

Also, could some of that 'dirty' laundry dug up be Micro$oft's ?

[ Reply to This | # ]

AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 07:38 AM EDT
I get the feeling that this is somehow related to the Intel-Apple deal. Does
AMD feel left out on this rather big deal? Did AMD hear about the deal before
hand and tried to talk to Apple but was sent away?

I, for one, would have preferred to see an AMD-Apple deal. I feel AMD's chips
are currently superior at most of the price points. Plus, it would have created
a more even playing field. Intel-Dell-Microsoft vs. AMD-Apple-Apple wars!!!

[ Reply to This | # ]

AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: arcite on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 07:42 AM EDT
Like every piece of litigation this case is going to have another side to it,
being intel's arguments. This post was intended to gather some thoughts
anticipating what intel might argue in its defence (although we really need some
evidence I don't suppose there's any harm in a little speculation). I'm
Australian, so the law I know is Australian law, I'm interested in the
corresponding provisions of the US acts and their loopholes (if any) that intel
might try to poke through.

So some defences intel might try:

1. Arguing that its 'partnership' program is a legitimate means of outsourcing
marketing.

2. That the alleged payments were never made. Discounts were made to the large
resellers, but these discounts were made on the basis of quantity. If they sold
more, the discount was bigger, hence providing an incentive for the reseller to
not split their product into intel and amd lines.

3. That none of the agreements referred to 'competing' or 'AMD' brands, but only
referred to raw quantities of intel product.

There are likely to be a large number of similar arguments put. It will be much
easier for AMD to prove that Intel was anticompetitive if it proves the
agreements were DIRECTLY dependent on minimal AMD sales. Intel have been (are)
walking a very fine line, it partly comes down to how well intel's lawyers have
been drafting the agreements and the willingness of the court to see through the
sham arrangements for what they are.

There may be other very technical arguments, such as arguing that it was not
abusing its market share (selling CPUs), but is taking advantage of another
corporation's market share in another separate market (the sale of PCs). In
Australia, these defences could be caught under s45 (contracts/understandings)
and 47 (exclusive dealing) if they weren't caught directly under abuse of market
power (s46 Trade Practices Act).

If AMD wins it will have significant contractual implications for companies such
as MS which are attempting to defend market share in server OS markets and how
it contracts with people like Dell.

[ Reply to This | # ]

AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 08:35 AM EDT
While it would be easy to say that AMD is a victim of exclusionary business
practices, lets remember that system builders are not children. They have every
right to pursue alternatives and many of them did not puruse them.

Consider: how could any business man, in his right mind, enter into an exclusive
agreement with one supplier, knowing that that one supplier could destroy him?
Because everyone else is doing it?

On the other hand, I have to wonder about the confidence of a company in its own
products if they feel the need to exclude others through exclusive supply
contracts. In other words, if a company has a monopoly, and fears competition,
why not make a better product at a better price than try to exclude the
competition through contracts?

These same monopolists, when prosecuted, will bleat about how they should be
left free to innovate, and how dare those governments interfere with their
innovations.

If Intel gets popped for this on three continents, then we might see not only
AMD, but also more Power and hopefully, the Cell processors getting bigger
chunks of the market for real choice.

One last thing: I think it would be interesting to see MS joined as a defendant
for collusion with Intel. If the compilers make Windows run slower on AMD than
on Intel, we'd have to wonder why MS would let that happen. Hmmm.

Scott

[ Reply to This | # ]

Hector's Call to Arms
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 08:55 AM EDT
Letter to Employees from Hector Ruiz:

A Call to Arms: Stand Up For What is Right

June 28, 2005


Dear Fellow Employees,



AMD is now an undeniable industry leader. In technology -- with our AMD64
technology and our move to dual-core processing. In manufacturing -- with our
world-class Fab 30 and Fab 36 as well as our Automated Precision Manufacturing
capability. And in marketing -- with examples like our AMD Athlon™ 64 FX, the
most powerful PC processor in the world; our upcoming Lance Armstrong Foundation
special edition LiveSTRONG laptop; and our global 50x15 commitment, which has
earned us great attention on a global stage.



With leadership comes additional responsibility -- specifically, the
responsibility to stand up for what we know is right. I am writing you today as
a call to arms, to encourage you to join me in standing up for what we know is
right -- for our customers, our business partners, our shareholders and us, the
great employees of AMD.



AMD has filed an antitrust suit against Intel in the U.S. district court in
Delaware to free this industry from monopolistic abuse. With this lawsuit we
want to ensure that our competitor is held accountable for its actions.



Intel’s unfair business practices continue to prevent AMD and other industry
players from competing effectively, and they hinder customers’ freedom to choose
the best available technology. This results in less innovation and higher prices
for customers worldwide.



Today, I will be hosting a videoconference for Sunnyvale and Austin employees to
explain the litigation, what it means for us and the industry, and to answer
questions. Tom McCoy, executive vice president of legal affairs, and chief
administrative officer, will join me in this briefing. For those of you who are
not based in Sunnyvale or Austin and would like to listen to the meeting, a
dial-in number has been provided to all global directors and vice presidents to
enable you to do so. In addition, a video webcast of the meeting will be
available on AMD Online within one to two days.



As we work toward our victorious day in court, we will need to continue to
execute diligently through what will be a long legal process with its inevitable
share of highs and lows. But either we take on this fight now, or surrender
ourselves to the crippling grips of a monopolist that can and will ultimately
obliterate the very things we hold so dear -- innovation and the fundamental
freedom of choice. Our reason for being is to follow our customer-centric
innovation philosophy and bring the best products to market. We have everything
it takes to do so, and indeed, we’ve never been stronger. It’s now or never.



So thank you for all you’ve done and all you will continue to do to help ensure
that we, our customers and our industry, once and for all, can break free.



Hector Ruiz

[ Reply to This | # ]

Price and capacity
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 09:04 AM EDT
Hector mentions that consumers lose because they pay excessive prices for
computers. Yet I don't see AMD dropping their prices a whole lot below Intel.
Reason for this? AMD is currently at or near full capacity. 2006 should see the
new fab come on line and the 3rd party production start, but even then AMD
probably doesn't want a price war with Intel - hence they need to make headway
into more big name PC makers. BTW, I also thought AMD/Apple would have been
better tech. I also see AMD as a good buy for IBM now. Power will continue in
embedded devices. But with the loss of Apple, buying AMD would actually increase
IBMs market for processors ;-)

[ Reply to This | # ]

Wintel IMHO
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 09:05 AM EDT

Intel have never been M$.

They have never attempted to strangle x86 ( Intels Invention) in the way that M$ tried to strangle operating systems.

Chip design and manufacture isn't software design and manufacture. It costs billions to even own a Fab

I haven't personally bought an Intel processor since around 1990 (although I bought plenty on my customer's insistence). I went first for Cyrix and then AMD (both backed by IBM whom I have a historical aversion to, predating the eighties).

IMHO AMD are on thin ice. There has always been competition in the semi-conductor market. Does Hynix give any quarter to Intel.

Intel were lucky that M$ and IBM chose their chip back around 1980 to do their thing with DOS. For all it's faults x86 was designed and invented by Intel from the start.

They have used the advantages of size, scale and costs since then but that has little to do with the problems of monopoly. They may have been the biggest but there are certainly other chip makers out there.

Brian S.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Licensing?
Authored by: ricerocket on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 09:36 AM EDT
I am fairly sure that AMD actually has to, or did, license Intels technology to
actually build their chips, correct?

I think the AMD/Intel relationship is more complicated than mere competitors.

How would that affect there relationship, would a cross licensing aggrement have
stipulations in it regarding future lawsuits that were generated between the
two?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Intel has been and is an monopoly
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 10:11 AM EDT
Has everyone forgotten history already?
Intel is a monopoly and has been for quite a long time.
Remember their last competitor?? DEC... yeah, that fiasco.

Intel couldn't compete. So what did they do? The Intel CEO had Compaq buy out
DEC, and quietly kill it.

I am not sure about AMDs situation. People said due to anti-competitive
situation it was the only way Intel could get rid of DEC.

At the time Intel had even stolen (literally) some of DECs technology, and it
was going to court. What better way to make a lawsuit go away than to get rid of
the competition?

Can they do the same to AMD? is AMD too large and established? I suppose someone
with big enough pockets could to it. It remains to be seen what will happen with
this...

[ Reply to This | # ]

AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 11:02 AM EDT
A few months ago, I decided to specifically buy a 64-bit processor machine in order to get my feet wet in understanding programming differences between the current 32-bit applications, and what to expect in 64-bit processors. It would allow me to do so on a low-risk, low cost strategy.

I note that the machine I was able to get from Micro Center in Fairfax, VA, for an obscenely low price, ran Lindows, and uses an AMD Athlon 64. Since, as it turns out, they ran out of stock and sold me the display model, I got it for $50 less. So what I got was a brand-new 2.8 ghz machine with 128MB of memory, 40 gb of disk space, mouse and keyboard, including tax, for just under $300. (I think it was $297.45 or something like that.)

I changed a lot of parts on the machine - including adding more memory - to bring it up to what I want to do, but even so, to be able to experiment on 64-bit computing for a low price is nice.

The point of this story? Note that this low priced computer does work, will provide significant capability and can do many things, and does not use either the Microsoft monopoly software, nor the (alleged) Intel monopoly microprocessors.

Paul Robinson <paul@paul-robinson.us> "The lessons of history teach us - if they teach us anything - that nobody learns the lessons that history teaches us."

[ Reply to This | # ]

Time to switch back to AMD
Authored by: ray08 on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 11:36 AM EDT
A little less than a year ago I built a new PC and decided to go with the P4
mainly because I do huge amounts of Divx encodes and the P4 is faster than the
Athlon for that. So far, the system works rather well. I suspected Intel was up
to shady practices, but I had no idea of the scope of it until now. I also
wondered why Dell always acted like it was "curious" about the
possibilty of using AMD, but never made any commitment to it. I am somewhat
surprised that Intel could strong-arm such a large company like Dell, but not
HP. Hats off to HP for thumbing their nose at Intel and doing what's right,
offering AMD as a choice for customers.

OK, Intel, you've convinced me forever. Any future systems I build will always
use AMD. Yeah, I know, big whoop! But when word of your abuse gets out and the
courts award billions in damages, and customers have the freedom of a real
choice, you'll care then, but it'll be too late!

---
Caldera is toast! And Groklaw is the toaster! (with toast level set to BURN)

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun needs to join this
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 11:38 AM EDT
I would love to see Sun join this. They are the only "big"
manufacturer with the guts to produce AMD machines and show thier superiority on
paper. I am fighting a battle with the powers that be at work to choose AMD over
Intel. However, Intel is pulling the same discount crap. Fortunetly, Sun is
fighting back with AMD processor based systems, bigger discounts, and a superior
OS. Intel is pitching Linux so hard that they are willing to bring thier own
designers in to rework our software to Linux. This is all over a little known
technology called ATcA that is exclusive to the Telecom business.

[ Reply to This | # ]

You know what I'm sick of?
Authored by: cmc on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 12:18 PM EDT
*Forcing major customers such as Dell, Sony, Toshiba, Gateway, and Hitachi into Intel-exclusive deals in return for outright cash payments, discriminatory pricing or marketing subsidies conditioned on the exclusion of AMD;

*According to industry reports, and as confirmed by the JFTC in Japan, Intel has paid Dell and Toshiba huge sums not to do business with AMD.

*Intel paid Sony millions for exclusivity. AMD's share of Sony's business went from 23 percent in '02 to 8% in '03, to 0%, where it remains today.


This is very frustrating to me. I "get it" that this is unethical at the very least, and quite probably illegal at most. But here's what really frosts my cookies, as they say: all complaints in these types of situations go against one side, and usually one side only. Here, AMD is filing an antitrust suit against Intel. OK, they may deserve it. But what about the other companies that went along with it? Dell, Sony, Toshiba, Gateway, and Hitachi? Where is their responsibility and accountability in this? If Intel broke the law, then so did they. And yet that other half of these situations goes largely (or completely) unpunished. Where's the justice in that?

cmc

[ Reply to This | # ]

Looks like another SCO to me
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 12:40 PM EDT
In my opinion, AMD is doing this because Microsoft is behind them, pushing this action, and promising ongoing support.

This is just one more step in Microsoft's ongoing promotion of AMD, and FUDing of Intel -- a process that has been going on for a few years now. The original trigger for Microsoft's courting of AMD may have been this:

ZDNet: Intel courts Linux developers with Itanium specs

Of course, Microsoft has threatened to do it before, as described in the DOJ Findings of Fact:

> In February 1997, one of Intel's competitors, called AMD, solicited support from Microsoft for its "3DX" technology, which provided sophisticated multimedia support for games. Microsoft's Allchin asked Gates whether Microsoft should support 3DX, despite the fact that Intel would oppose it. Gates responded: "If Intel has a real problem with us supporting this then they will have to stop supporting Java Multimedia the way they are. I would gladly give up supporting this if they would back off from their work on JAVA which is terrible for Intel."

Also note this quote:

> Near the end of March, Allchin sent another message to Gates and Maritz. In it he wrote, "I am positive that we must do a direct attack on Sun (and probably Oracle). . . . Between ourselves and our partners, we can certainly hurt their (certainly Sun's) revenue base. . . . We need to get Intel to help us. Today, they are not."

This second quote, along with the SCO case, shows a pattern of Microsoft coercing its partners into attacking its enemies. Microsoft involvement would also explain why AMD would take this action now, despite the risks.

As those who have been following the action know, Intel has not been playing Microsoft's game for some time now. Microsoft's inability to support new technologies within a reasonable time frame has been holding Intel back, and Intel knows it.

The situation is as follows:

  1. Microsoft knows that Intel had a lot more to do with the PC's success than Microsoft did. Intel continuously improved their product, and reduced prices, while Microsoft barely managed to keep up, making poor copies of other companies' software, years late. Microsoft is afraid, correctly, that Intel still has the power to move the industry forward, with Microsoft unable to follow.

  2. With the growing acceptance of Linux, Intel no longer has to hold back, while Microsoft catches up (as, for example, when an entire decade passed between the introduction of the 80386, and Microsoft's eventual use of its memory management capabilities). Intel can now move forward with things like 64-bit, multi-core, and parallel CPUs, with the necessary operating system support in place to allow Intel to sell their products. But that OS is going to be Linux, because Microsoft can't improve Windows fast enough to keep up.

  3. Intel has made it clear that they are no longer going to be held back by Windows. When Microsoft could not make Windows run efficiently on a 64-bit CPU, it was AMD, not Intel, that compromised their design, and wasted 64-bit CPU real estate in order to add the 32-bit support to overcome Microsoft's weaknesses.

  4. In order to stop Linux, Microsoft is trying to decommoditize PC hardware, with hidden interface specs (as described in the Halloween document). NVidia and ATI have gone along with Microsoft, cutting back on their help for Open Source driver developerment (instead, during this embrace stage, providing closed source drivers, and increasingly complex interfaces). AMD has also gone along, for example, when AMD gave Microsoft the necessary information to fix the AMD "Processor Bug," but Linux developers were left out in the cold, until they figured out the problem for themselves. Meanwhile, Intel has comtinued to keep their specs open, even going so far as to release a series of platform specs just for Linux.

  5. Intel is now cooperating with Apple, a company that just recently broke out from under Microsoft's thumb. With the availability of Safari, Mozilla, and OpenOffice for OS/X, Microsoft can no longer threaten Apple, as they did when Microsoft wanted Apple to stop supporting Netscape. With its new freedom, and the cheaper Intel hardware, Apple may be a real threat to Microsoft, for the first time. Plus, like Linux, and unlike Microsoft, Apple will be able to add timely support for new PC hardware developments.

  6. Lastly, there's payback -- a big motivation for Gates. When asked, Intel refused to lie to the DOJ for Microsoft, instead providing truthful evidence about Microsoft's activities, such as when Microsoft was pressuring Intel to stop helping Sun improve Java for the x86.

Therefore, Intel is now a threat to Microsoft, and Microsoft needs to hurt Intel's business. Otherwise, Microsoft is going to be left behind while Intel, Linux, Apple, and a few others, move the industry forward.

But Microsoft can't attack Intel directly. Not only would everyone see through it, but they would also start to realize how vulnerable Microsoft is at this time, due to the slow pace of their development, and the faster pace of their competitors.

Thus, Microsoft needed a proxy to attack Intel. And what more logical choice is there than AMD?

[ Reply to This | # ]

DEC history
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 12:51 PM EDT
A little history on why AMD is where it is.

DEC - Digital Electronics Corp. launches their Alpha processor.

Alpha processor spanks Intel royally.

Intel launches superscalar Pentium Pro/Klamath CPU's

DEC sues Intel for patent infringement and anti-trust.

Intel buy's DEC.

DEC employees responsible for Alpha (effectively, DEC's entire Austin
engineering house) resign and go to AMD.

A couple years later AMD debuts the Athlon/K7. AMD spanks Intel royally.

The rest is history, and I think it's obvious where this lawsuit is really
coming from.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dirk_Meyer

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Will I Need Popcorn?
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 01:24 PM EDT
Hey everybody!

Is there a way to capture the video stream as either an MP3 or (even better) a
video file? I have a habit of collecting stuff like this, and this seems
vital.

Dobre utka,
The Blue Sky Ranger

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AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 02:16 PM EDT
AMD is in trouble because it is stupid, not because of anything Intel did
illegally. AMD has often sold there Athlon for a lower price than a Pentium
even though it had better specs.

I suspect the japan incident was related to a few employees who did the wrong
thing and were probably punished.
Giving discounts for volume sales is standard practice and there is nothing
illegal about that. AMD can distort things and say these are illegal exclusive
deals, but that is not what the courts are going to say.

In 2002 the economy was bad and companies had to reduce their expenses. You
have 50 engineers working on Intel product and you have 50 engineers working on
AMD product. So the question becomes do you drop Intel which is 90% of your
business or do you drop 10% of your business. The choice is obvious, you drop
AMD, and the corresponding 50 engineers.

If you look at independent rankings of ethical companies you will find that
Intel is at the top.

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AMD's superior technology
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 04:15 PM EDT

I think what is really driving this is that now AMD has unquestionably better
technology than Intel has.

This means Intel's only means to maintain its monopoly is its anticompetive bag
of tricks.

In days of yore, Intel made processors which were as good or better than AMD
counterparts. That's not true today.

Intel's high-end desktop CPUs offer inferior performance combined with very high
power consumption and cooling requirents at absurd prices. Only with a monopoly
can you sell such crap.

If there's any hope for Intel in genuine technical competition it's in their
Pentium-M Centrino stuff; the P4 is dead in the water.

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Monopoly/Proprietary media formats
Authored by: Dr.Dubious DDQ on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 05:20 PM EDT
[...] if you use RealPlayer or Microsoft MediaPlayer. Speaking of monopolies.

The usual argument is that the media providers HAVE to settle on only one or two formats because it's just too much work to support a whole bunch of different formats.

I wonder - would they be willing to provide a moderately good quality original of the recording to people who were willing to handle the work of producing e.g. Ogg Theora/Speex/MP3/etc versions?

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AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: blacklight on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 05:26 PM EDT
I expect that the Intel legal team is going to have its hands full with AMD's
complaint because Intel is indded a monopoly, and because AMD's allegations are:
(1) specific and (2) easily provable (assuming that AMD has the evidence and the
records).

I welcome AMD's lawsuit because it is about time that the issues associated with
Intel's behavior as a monopolist came to a head.

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Closed Source and Intel...
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 05:57 PM EDT
Anyone remember "Appendix H" that only those who paid Intel extra $s
for
would be able to see?

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whew!
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 06:57 PM EDT
I'm just glad they didn't file it in Utah!

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Intel's arrogance
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 08:04 PM EDT
I cannot speak of anti-trust violations, simply because I have no first-hand
facts to back that up, but I can testify that Intel's sales people and engineers
are the most arrogant ones that I have ever seen. Back in the days of K6, they
used to call AMD and Cyrix "imitators", not competitors, in the
meetings we had with them (we were an OEM) and would generally ridicule anything
non-Intel. Compared to them, Microsoft folk were always polite and
professional.

I hope they get a serving of their own stuff back, for a change.

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  • Intel's arrogance - Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, June 29 2005 @ 10:51 AM EDT
"Intel and AMD: a long history in court" - the word according to CNet.
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 08:29 PM EDT

Intel and Advanced Micro Devices' long history of competing for microprocessor dominance has landed them in court before.

In the latest salvo, AMD this week filed an antitrust suit in U.S. District Court in Delaware. Here are some key moments in the companies' entwined histories:..... Cnet

Brian S.

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AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 09:14 PM EDT
You guys are spending too much time on Toms Hardware guide and not enough on
actual data.

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Innocent Until Proven Guilty
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 09:26 PM EDT
Readers, please do not make any knee-jerk reactions and say things like "oh
I guess I will not buy Intel anymore."

An accusation is not proof. If it was, SCO would be rich now.

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What Intel has done.
Authored by: kb8rln on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 10:28 PM EDT

First look at 64 bit XP not being release until 64 bit Intel processor was ready. AMD has a 64 bit chip for over 2 years. Is Wintel alive? I think so.

Now look at the DRM stuff we have been talking about with Intel. Intel was the first with the serial number and now the first with the DRM stuff that Long Horn will use.

The ties between Microsoft and Intel is a little too close for my comfort.

ps: I have over 10 AMDs machines. 1 had a processor die because of the cpu fan failure.


Richard Rager
penguinman.com

---
Director Of Infrastructure Technology (DOIT)
Really this is my Title so I not a Lawyer.

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Did anyone else notice?
Authored by: inode_buddha on Tuesday, June 28 2005 @ 10:54 PM EDT
"*Then-Compaq CEO Michael Capellas said in 2000 that because of the volume of business given to AMD, Intel withheld delivery of critical server chips. Saying "he had a gun to his head," he told AMD he had to stop buying."

When I first saw this, the very *first* thing I thought of was Itanium and the Monterey Project. But then, some days are like that.

---
-inode_buddha
Copyright info in bio

"When we speak of free software,
we are referring to freedom, not price"
-- Richard M. Stallman

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AMD Files AntiTrust Lawsuit Against Intel in Federal Court
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, June 29 2005 @ 03:31 AM EDT
"We strongly disagree with AMD's complaints about the business practices of Intel and Intel's customers. Intel believes in competing fairly and believes consumers are benefiting from this vigorous competition. AMD has chosen, once again, to complain to a court about Intel's success with a legal case full of excuses and speculation. Intel will respond appropriately to AMD's latest complaints and is committed to successfully resolving these issues in court," said an Intel statement read by Beerman.

http://www.itworld.com/Man/2699/050628amdcase/

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That compiler claim looks pretty absurd to me.
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, June 29 2005 @ 05:44 AM EDT
AMD accuses: "Intel designed its compilers, which translate software
programs into machine-readable language, to degrade a program's performance if
operated on a computer powered by an AMD microprocessor."

I can't speak to the rest of the complaints, but I find this one sufficiently
absurd to make me doubt the rest of them.

Intel does not have anything approximating a monopoly in compilers; they've got
a number of strong competitors for each of the two languages that they support
-- Fortran and C++. Intel's compilers, for a number of programs, produce
slightly faster code than the competition on Intel chips because they are
designed to take advantage of every new improvement that Intel puts into the
chips -- the whole point of their existence is to enable people to use those
features. The differences are pretty marginal for everything but the most
processor-limited codes, though, and so I don't think there's too much reason to
use them unless you absolutely need that performance, or because they're the
cheapest student-version Fortran 95 around. Their C++ compiler, for instance,
requires Microsoft Visual Studio (which comes with its own C++) in order to run;
it's not a standalone product.

So, if Intel were to put in "sabotage AMD" code in its compilers, what
would happen? Simple -- people would notice that Intel's compilers were slower
on AMD machines, and when compiling things to run on AMD machines, they would
use one of the many other compilers in the world -- which have no reason to
sabotage performance on AMD, because that would sabotage their own sales!

This would not benefit Intel in the slightest.

And the existence of said code is further directly contradicted by the fact
that, on a number of benchmarks USING AMD PROCESSORS, Intel's compiler produces
the fastest code! (And, on the ones where it doesn't, it's still within the
variablity expected from different compilers.)

So, what's the complaint about? My guess -- and this is just a guess -- is that
it comes from this: No doubt there are things that make for faster code on Intel
chips but will make for slower code on AMD chips, just because the processors
are different. Intel, obviously, is going to pick the one that goes faster on
Intel chips, because that's the whole point of the compiler. Someone else
building a compiler might choose the other one, if it makes the performance more
equal. And Intel is going to put in code to support the nifty new features of
the new Intel chips, but not to support the new features of the new AMD chips.
I can't see any reason why Intel should be thought to have an obligation to do
anything different -- any more than Ford should have an obligation to make their
dealer-sold accessories fit Chevy trucks.

- Brooks (not a lawyer, and has no inside info on this matter.)

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Support AMD
Authored by: DaveJakeman on Wednesday, June 29 2005 @ 08:10 AM EDT

My unashamed plug for AMD: build your own PC and put an AMD processor in it.

If you've never done this before, you'll be surprised at how easy it is. It just needs a little research on the internet (Tom's Hardware is a good start). Choose the parts you fancy, ensuring they are compatible, put them together, load the OS of your choice, do a backup and you're all set. You probably won't save much money compared to buying a pre-built system, but you *will* get exactly the PC you want, be it a budget workhorse or the powerhouse of your dreams. You'll also gain a great sense of achievement. And you won't be lumbered with anything you don't want (without naming names).

I built my first PC in 2000, based on an AMD Athlon processor. I switched it on and it worked first time. It's had a few component upgrades since then, but still has the same processor and still gives a very respectable performance. It lacks nothing and still does anything and everything I want. Since 2000, PC technology has advanced enough (USB 2, SATA II, PCI express, 64-bit, etc) to justify building my second PC, even though my first is still perfectly good. This I will do soon and its heart will be an AMD processor.

A good way to start is with a wish list. Here's the wish list for my next PC:

Case: Lian Li PC-V1000
Power Supply: Enermax EG701-AX-VE(W) (600W) - or bigger
Motherboard: Abit Fatal1ty AN8
Processor: AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ dual-core (1MB cache/core)
Cooler: Titan Vanessa L-Type
Memory: Corsair CL2-2-2-5 Dimms (3200XL Pro) 4 x 512MB
DVD Writer(s): LG GSA-4163B Super Multi DVD (see cdfreaks.com) - two?
Graphics Card: ATI R520 512MB or Nvidia GeForce 7800 GTX
Sound Card: Creative X-Fi - due in the autumn
Mouse: Logitech MX1000 or MX518
CF Card Reader: ?
Diskette Drive: ?
Keyboard: ?
SATA II Backplane: SNT-135 ? (ktscomputers.co.uk)
Large SATA II Disk: ?
Small SATA II Disks: WD 740, 10,000rpm ?

As you can see, it's not final yet.

So am I glad I used AMD before? Yes. AMD processors are good and have been for years.

AMD are one of the good guys in this industry and they deserve your support. Support them in the way they appreciate it most. You'll win too.

---
Should one hear an accusation, first look to see how it might be levelled at the accuser.

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More examples of Intel's anti-competitive behavior
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, June 29 2005 @ 05:19 PM EDT
Anandtech describes how Intel bullies motherboard manufacturers, and not just PC manufacturers and retailers. ZDNet has an article on Intel's code of silence, or how PC manufacturers are too frightened to push their AMD-based offerings too much.

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