Too many Intel Haswells will spoil the broth

Intel is unlikely to release its Core i “Haswell” Platform in any serious numbers because of the “annoying” USB 3.0 flaw.

JoAnne Feeney, an analyst with Longbow Research, said that although Intel is on track to introduce its next-generation Core i-series “Haswell” microprocessors in June, it is unlikely we will see many of them.

When a PC system with Core i-series “Haswell” and 8-series chipset inside wakes from S3 sleep mode, it experiences issues with devices connected through USB 3.0. Intel seemingly defines the issue only as a nuisance as there would be no serious unpleasant consequences, such as data loss. You can fix it by restarting the software.

Feeney thinks that in high volumes this glitch will depress the ailing PC market. Intel is just better to wait and fix the problem first.

She wrote that Haswell for desktop will launch with cautious volume in June using the faulty C1 stepping, and then to see a stronger ramp once the glitch is worked out.

However this will not be a bad thing. Intel had not been expected to get Haswell out in June at all.

Feeney said that caution in Ivy Bridge units is still likely to constrain gross margin for Intel and contacts point to August as the more significant launch period.

So far Intel has not said how long it will take to get a revision of its 8-series chipsets with corrected USB 3.0 operations. Feeney thinks it should be by the end of Summer.

This will cause the industry to lean on the much safer Ivy Bridge platform which is socket compatible with Sandy Bridge, unlike Haswell.

By the end of the year Haswell will make up half of desktop CPU shipments, Feeney said.