Intel’s Arc discrete graphics cards may be about to be canned, at least that’s what a prominent leaker believes.
Famous YouTuber Moore’s law is dead (opens in new tab) (MLID) explains that the general feeling among Intel insiders is that Arc GPUs, which launched with Alchemist models this year, won’t survive much longer.
More specifically, MLID cites one source – at the executive level – that rather brazenly claims Arc is “finished”, and another source simply says Intel is ending its Arc discrete efforts.
That really couldn’t be clearer, but of course we must remember that this is just vine chatter, so we should still take it with extreme caution. As MLID makes clear in the intro to the video announcing this, it’s not the news anyone wants to hear, including himself.
Analysis: We hope this isn’t true – and there may be other possibilities for Arc
So let’s not get carried away with this, but this obviously doesn’t sound right. We’d heard rumors that Intel might be canceling its discrete Arc project recently, but after that Intel got on the defensive pretty quickly, assuring us that Arc graphics cards are here to stay, and that work had already begun on the second-generation Battlemage GPUs. , at full speed ahead.
MLID does note that very recently a source talked about Battlemage’s progress, but Intel wasn’t looking to produce a whole range of graphics cards, as with Alchemist (A7, A5, A3), but maybe just low-end models (what would be B3). That would keep costs down and allow for further tightening of drivers, with the latter software side of the equation being a big deal for Intel and one of the main reasons for the delays and disappointment surrounding the Arc Alchemist rollout.
However, this was the word that preceded hearing these new sources essentially saying that Arc Discrete appears to be done.
Looking at the Alchemist rollout, which has been a grueling and stuttering affair to say the least, hasn’t given us an optimistic outlook for Intel’s discrete GPUs – we’ve stated ourselves in the past that the cards looked doomed from the start. And in light of Intel’s recent financial troubles, with a major negative factor on the balance sheet like Arc, it wouldn’t be much of a surprise to see the discrete project halted — or at the very least, cut back severely.
Remember, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger just said the company’s performance will likely deteriorate before it sees an improvement, and further steps will be taken to reduce Team Blue’s product portfolio. Apparently, if this rumor is true, ditching Arc GPUs could be part of that streamlining.
As MLID puts it, Intel just can’t afford to subsidize a division it doesn’t think will last the company for too many years, given the overall difficult fiscal waters the company is currently navigating.
Now this may not turn out to be true, so let’s hope it does – but if Arc goes ahead, it sounds like it will most likely be in a much smaller form than the larger plans of a whole host of laptop and desktop devices. GPUs as suggested by Alchemist. MLID theorizes that we might see a separate Battlemage product, like some sort of low-end graphics solution for laptops, but what we’re seemingly not going to get is a thriving assortment of GPUs to meaningfully challenge AMD and Nvidia.