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Beastly Itanium delayed until Q4

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IDF Fall '04 Intel will confirm later today that a new version of the Itanium processor with 9MB of Level 3 cache will be delayed until the fourth quarter and come in at a slower speed.

Intel now plans to debut a 1.6GHz Itanium chip with the beastly Level 3 cache in the fourth quarter. The company had originally planned to bring this chip out at 1.7GHz in the third quarter. Current Itanium chips only ship with 6MB of Level 3 cache. Analysts were informed of the delay earlier this week, and Intel plans to announce the move at its IDF conference later today.

"It's a minor roadmap tweak," said Gordon Haff, an analyst at Illuminata. "Because it's Intel, it will gain some attention, but it's really a pretty minor adjustment."

While minor, this delay is the latest in a string of slipped products for Intel. It has had particular trouble on the mobile processor side of the house with product delays and recalls hurting sales. Intel's recent failures prompted CEO Craig Barrett to chastise staffers. Intel reiterated these points during a morning keynote at IDF with President Paul Otellini saying the company had "fumbled" on delivering product and would be more conservative with its roadmaps.

While this one Itanium processor is being delayed, Intel is still on track with the dual-core Montecito product due out next year.

"That's the really big roadmap milestone," Haff said. ®

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