The Reason behind Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)’s Secrecy with Cherry Trail


Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) is a company that is known for manufacturing and distributing cutting-edge technology microprocessors. Each year, the company comes up with a new technological piece of art that thrills the industry and takes everyday gadgets one step forward in performance and functionality. Now, Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) has developed a new processor for tablets, codenamed Cherry Trail, which it announced at the CES conference this year.

But Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) has been careful not to release any information about the new piece of equipment it has already started distributing to its valued customers. According to Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), such information is not for Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) to disclose, and is up to the buyers to release this information. However, not all is unknown about the chip. According to credible reports, the chip is a 14 nanometer technology based on a system-on-chip (SoC) design, and has already entered mass production at Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) Corp.

This means things are improving for Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), and here’s how. Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), and other microprocessor manufacturers in the industry, all have one goal: to lower the time gap between the release of the CPU and SoC versions of the chip. The CPU version is released before because it is easier to manufacture (because of the increased area of operation, there is freedom to work hence no time is required for excessive precision).

While the SoC version is released by a gap of almost 2-3 years, on average, because of the requirement of excessive precision and manufactural constraints. Surely, the 22 nanometer version of Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)’s processors entered manufacturing in late 2011 for CPUs and was available in the market by early 2012, whereas the SoC version of the same couldn’t arrive in the market until late 2013. Almost 2 years, it took Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) to convert the CPU version of the processor into the SoC version.

That’s a long time in a highly competitive industry of microprocessor chips. However, now, Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) released Broadwell, its 14 nanometer CPU processor, in late 2014, and the SoC version of the same, Cherry Trail, is now entering production in the first quarter of 2015. That is a time gap of only a few months. This shows much improvement in the competitiveness of Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) in the market. According to senior Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) Fellow, Mark Bohr, “Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) used to develop two versions – CPU and SoC.

Now those versions have blended together so much that it’s no longer a fair way to describe them as two versions.” This “blending together” of both the versions may be the reason behind Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)’s quick transition from a CPU version to a SoC version of the same microprocessor.

So, why the secrecy? It seems that Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) does not wish to release specifications of the chipsets before their release on devices because it does not wish for its competitors in the market to gain any sort of advantage in this regard. The less information competitors have about Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)’s product specifications, the better it is for Intel (NASDAQ:INTC).

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