Intel is claiming bragging rights by showing off its first working server chip with four cores, saying they will provide a big boost in performance. The No. 1 chipmaker demoed a computer running four quad-core chips, for a total of 16 cores, that ran a 3-D graphics app 18 times faster than a single-core chip. Intel plans to introduce its first quad-core Xeon in November and offer quad-cores across its entire server line by the third quarter of 2007.
But rival Advanced Micro Devices says Intel is cutting corners by just bundling two dual-core chips; next year, AMD will deliver quad-core chips built on a single piece of silicon, which they maintain is a higher-performance approach. "The proof is going to be in the benchmarks," says Margaret Lewis, director of commercial ISV marketing at AMD. IT managers are still awaiting those.