Oracle claims Intel is looking to sink the Itanic

Intel's ill-fated Itanium line has lost another supporter, with Oracle announcing that it is to immediately stop all software development on the platform.

Despite Intel's assurances that the platform is still viable, with the announcement of the Poulson range of 32nm chips earlier this year, the architecture industry wags have labelled 'Itanic' is looking increasingly shaky.

Itanium was developed to take on the server market by offering Intel's first 64-bit processor with all the benefits that entails. Sadly, poor performance while running legacy 32-bit code coupled with a high power draw meant that the platform never took off in the way Intel was hoping, and was soon eclipsed by its own 64-bit Xeon processors based on the x86 architecture.

Enterprise Linux specialist Red Hat and software giant Microsoft have already announced that they are withdrawing support for the platform, and recent announcements from HP's Leo Apotheker touched on every subject but Itanium - suggesting that HP will be ditching the platform soon, too.

Oracle has this week announced that it's joining the ranks of deserters, immediately halting all software production on the platform.

"After multiple conversations with Intel senior management Oracle has decided to discontinue all software development on the Intel Itanium microprocessor," a company spokesperson claimed. "Intel management made it clear that their strategic focus is on their x86 microprocessor and that Itanium was nearing the end of its life."

If true, that suggests that Poulson could be the Itanium line's swansong - and it's not a platform that many are likely to mourn.