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Intel set to back VIA's Mini-ITX for SFF PCs?

Bulwark against AMD's DTX

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Intel may be set to promote a motherboard form-factor developed by rival chip maker VIA, it has been claimed, in a bid to beat AMD's recently announced would-be small form-factor PC standard, DTX.

The claim that Intel intends to back the 17 x 17cm Mini-ITX mobo form-factor comes from Taiwanese motherboard maker moles cited by local newssite DigiTimes. They say the chip giant will push the format next quarter for SFF machine and mini PCs.

They also claim Intel will tout SiS' SIS662 integrated chipset as the foundation for Mini-ITX mobos, though it's odd it would push a rival firm's product. That said, Intel has used third-party chippery in its own motherboards, most notably ATI chipsets when it's own production of low-end parts was being scaled back. Perhaps the sources are actually referring to product from Intel's own mobo division rather than the company as a whole.

Either way, the move - if true - can be seen at least in part as a response to AMD's recent launch of DTX, a putative standard for mini PCs. VIA has been touting Mini-ITX for some time, primarily as a product for PC enthusiasts who want to build PCs into unusual cases. It's also had some success pitching the format at embedded applications, but it has yet to have Mini-ITX adopted as the de facto standard for mini PCs. ®

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