Sources reveal that the chip giant is offering to shell out millions of dollars to anyone who will bravely take the plunge into the great Larrabee unknown -- an incentive which still doesn’t seem to be doing the trick, say some.
As with any new architecture, Larrabee is considered a risk, and a potentially costly one at that, scaring developers into uncertainty about whether or not to put the work in.
It seems that the only real way to force the developers’ hands, would be if Intel were to win a contract for a major console, meaning publishers would then have to programme for it.
This means Intel is now under immense pressure to get itself a console deal.
Sources claim Intel has offered Microsoft a lucrative deal in exchange for pushing AMD out of the running for the upcoming Xbox 720.
Offering everything from chips to chassis, Intel is purportedly wooing Microsoft right down to designing its thermals and pimping the Larrabee chipset out to Microsoft to subcontract out as it pleases.
Needless to say, this gives Microsoft some rather hefty bargaining power, and leaves both AMD and Nvidia quivering in their boots.
Intel also appears to be hedging its bets by wooing Sony by going after the Playstation 4, which won’t be out until at least 2011. The Xbox 720 will be out in the market a fair while before that.
Word out of the games convention in Leipzig appears to be that, in all likelihood, Larrabee version one will barely take off, but with the right console deal, Larabee Two – which should be making its first appearance somewhere around 2010 – could be a big player.
Not getting a console deal could potentially stifle Larabee in the short term, as most games these days are written for consoles before being ported to a PC. This means that even if PC users have ten times the power, they’re still stuck using games developed for DX9.
So, for Intel’s Larrabee, it could be either a console deal, or game over.
Intel needs a console deal to get Larrabee off the ground
By Sylvie Barak on Sep 4, 2008 1:54PM