Impact of Sandy Bridge recall minimal: Gartner

Impact of Sandy Bridge recall minimal: Gartner

CIOs have "nothing to worry about", analysts say

Industry analyst firm Gartner has allayed fears Intel's recall of Sandy Bridge processors will have a long term impact on the industry.

“PC makers have worked with Intel and developed workarounds that are enabling them to use the defective chips in ways such that the defect will never be exposed,” the firm's vice president, Steve Kleynhans, told CIO Australia.

“The impact of this problem will be minimal and likely mostly forgotten within six months.”

(Intel glitch is good news for tablets)

Kleynhans said Intel's decision to recall the Sandy Bridge chipset, revealed earlier this month, was made because the company is “very sensitive to serious problems with its products”.

PC and notebook vendors have halted shipments and delayed product launches affected by the recall in the past month, a global move that is expected to hit the financial results of those involved. Although Intel is working on a solution, reports suggest the chip maker is simultaneously and hurriedly negotiating with vendors to continue release of Sandy Bridge-based products with changes in motherboard design to circumvent the flaw.

“The Pentium FDIV problem in 1995 was a wakeup call for the company, and the industry, and has raised the sensitivity of shipping potentially defective products,” he said. “It’s just part of Intel’s DNA to ensure problems like this are dealt with as swiftly as possible. The problem here is relatively subtle and likely wouldn’t have impacted the vast majority of users.”

Kleynhans said there were likely to be minimal potential implications for CIOs as a result of the recall.

“Corporate PCs built with these parts weren’t scheduled for release until the April timeframe, and as noted, fall outside even the worst case envelope," he said.

Kleynhans said the impact is limited to those devices that haven’t yet been deployed in the enterprise.

“Obviously there are some issues for the industry as machines that are sitting in the channel; in factories, in containers on ships, in warehouses and in trucks, all need to be located, identified and recalled,” he said. “That shouldn’t impact customers too much.”

While the recall wont have a direct impact on too many CIOs, Kleynhans did say that early adopters were most likely to be affected.

“These users tend to be quick to adopt new products and push them to their limits,” he said. “Many also tend to buy motherboards and build their own systems, however they form a relatively small percentage of the market.”

The comments from Gartner come as HP announced it had delayed shipments of its new Pavilion laptops; a move possibly made because of Intel's Sandy Bridge chipset flaw.

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