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Intel speeds quad-core CPU roll-out to Q4

CEO pulls forward server, desktop chip launches

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Intel's quad-core processors 'Kentsfield' and 'Clovertown' may debut sooner than expected. Originally roadmapped for an H1 2007 introduction, the chips will now appear in Q4 2006, the chip giant's CEO, Paul Otellini, indicated yesterday.

In March this year, it emerged that Kentsfield, Intel's four-core successor to its Core 2 Duo desktop processor, would ship Q1 2007, narrowing the launch window down from the first-half timeframe publicly stated by Intel.

Yesterday, after publishing disappointing Q2 FY2006 results, Otellini said: "We're pulling in both the desktop and server [launch] of the first quad-core processors into the fourth quarter of this year from the first half of 2007.

Clovertown is expected to be pin-compatible with the recently released 'Woodcrest' dual-core Xeon DP 5100 family of server chips. Clovertown is believed to have a TDP of 120W, more than Woodcrest's 85W, and it's been claimed server makers are designing their systems for the four-core chip. If Intel ships the chip early, their move will have proved a smart one.

Otellini also confirmed recent reports that 'Tulsa', Intel's upcoming Xeon MP 7100 series server processor, will ship in Q3. The CPUs are expected to be formally announced on 27 August, but Otellini said the company's was already shipping the chips - and accounting revenue for them - to server vendors in preparation for the launch. ®

Read our Core 2 Extreme and Core 2 Duo review here

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