VIA heralds end of third-party PC chipset biz
Owned by Intel and AMD now
VIA has tacitly confirmed that it's quitting the PC chipset business, claiming that there's no longer a third-party chipset market worth the name.
Richard Brown, VIA's marketing chief, told Custom PC: "We believed that ultimately the third-party chipset market would disappear... That has indeed come to pass."
VIA's perspective is that with Intel producing almost all the chipsets used with Intel processors, and with AMD increasingly the prime supplier of system logic for its own processors, there's a rapidly narrowing space for third-party chipset makers.
In VIA's case, it appears it has decided the gap is now too narrow, and it's getting out. At the very least, it saves it having to go to the expense of licensing Intel's new QuickPath Interconnect (QPI) bus, set to debut with the giant's 'Nehalem' CPUs.
Nvidia has a QPI licence, though it had to hand over its multi-GPU technology, SLI, in exchange.
Curiously, it's only weeks since it was claimed that Nvidia had come to the same conclusion. Nvidia quickly denied it, but while it soldiers on, it has to face the prospect that it's getting harder and harder to occupy anything more than a niche, particularly now Intel has SLI.
Meanwhile, VIA will leverage its chipset expertise to build system chippery for its own CPUs.
nVidia are happy to soldier on with their motherboard products cause they're planning to move into the CPU market, then they'll be in the same chipset providing position as AMD and Intel
And thanks for all the cheap motherboard chipsets over the years...
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaagh! If you installed the Via driver (on Win95, this was when Win98 was too new) the IDE driver couldn't cope with simultaneous transfers to multiple devices. Like when you install software from an IDE CD-ROM to your IDE hard drive. VC5 installer fortunately checksummed the installed files, and spotted it for me.
Oh, and the PCI bus was set up wrong, so simultaneously drawing to the screen and playing audio didn't work.
I restarted my machine so many times the CD-ROM drive died.
The PCI timing bug continued until quite recently.