The PC market may go into a slump this year thanks to booming tablet sales, but as far as Intel can see, the server refresh cycle is accelerating as companies want to get rid of their ancient x64 boxes. As Intel has said many times, the Great Recession put the upgrade of millions of servers on hold, and in a lot of data centers …
We would like to upgrade to E7 sandy unfortunately that looks like it will only be available in Q4 and who knows with that sort of leadtime AMD might come up with something else.
Y2K may have knocked the analysis a bit.
The Y2K hilarity meant many companies replaced kit early in their lifecycle to ensure they had Y2K compliance. OK, I meant that many admins used Y2K as an excuse to ditch older kit and get shiny new stuff sooner than usual. This was problematic as companies had finite IT budgets and so then cut back on spends after Y2K, with the following economic downturn meaning the IT industry went from a peak down into a trough. But, purchases after that were in lockstep - everyone that had bought new kit prior to the Y2K date then went and renewed it three-to-four years after. Over time, that lockstep will dissipate as buys spread out, but I think you can still see the cyclical pattern in the vendors' results since. I think Intel is just riding up on the wave of current x64 replacements, and we may see a dip going into 2013 regardless of economic performance. Whilst that may not bother Intel too much, AMD's problems mean AMD doesn't seem to have made hay whilst the sun was shining, and may suffer as we go into the dip. With the next big scare date (in UNIX) being 2038, AMD may be facing lean times for a while.
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