Tough Times at Santa Clara
Intel is in a dangerous position right now. They have the capital to recover but they must be prudent. Many people don't realize how good of a design Ryzen is for the upper-upper end. When Intel needs to make a 16 core chip, they have to make a large 16 core die. When AMD releases Threadripper and Epyc, to get to 16 cores, they can just connect two 8 core chips together. AMD calls it Infinity Fabric. The cost to make a 16 core die is significantly higher than the cost to make two 8 core dies. And that is even considering Intel has some of the best fabs in the world. The Core i7/Xeon may be faster for games, it won't be able to compete with AMD for price/performance. A 16 core Xeon might be better than a 16 core Epyc, but not $1000 better. And with the Ryzen design, AMD can make a 32 core CPU, price as much as a 16 core Xeon, and still make a huge profit.
Add to all that the pressure of ARM CPU's. I don't know how the future plays out, but if people ever decide they don't need legacy support, ARM has an easy path to desktops/laptops.
And why did Intel make Thunderbolt an open standard? What did they gain? This was a prized plum for them. It kept Apple locked in to Intel. But Apple has been getting closer to AMD lately. Look at the new iMac pro with a Vega GPU in it. Some people feel that Apple put pressure on Intel to open Thunderbolt. If so, Apple could be using a future Ryzen APU as leverage for better prices.
Intel has the money and engineers to copy AMD's design. But even if they started today, it still would be years before such a design came to market. Intel won't be able to put illegal pressure on OEM's anymore so they will less AMD like in the Athlon 64 days. If they do, the fines probably wouldn't be worth it this go around. The best they can do is to continue to pay for ads for OEM's like they do now. (That is standard in businesses. My friend has a HVAC business. When he sells a lot of A/C's in a particular brand, that company buys an ad for his business proportional to the amount he sells.) At least Intel understands marketing, unlike AMD.
Intel better plan for the future well. We need Intel. And AMD. And Qualcomm. And NVidia. And other CPU/GPU companies. When there is competition, we all win.