Intel Is Positioning Xeon Processors To Compete With Itanium In Server Market

Intel has admitted that it is planning to replace its Itanium CPUs saying that the Xeon line will soon move into its high availability, mission critical arena according to thinq_

At Intel's Day in the Clouds event, Dylan Larson, director of Xeon Platform Marketing at Intel, said that the firm was developing its Xeon processors with a "no compromise attitude". When asked what that meant in real terms, Larson said it was to "position Xeon for the big back end".

In Intel parlance that means the space currently occupied by Itanium which dominates the ultra-reliable server market.

Earlier in the day Larson told journalists that Intel will ship a version of its Atom processor under the Xeon brand. Single-socket 'microservers' will, according to Larson, make up 10 per cent of Intel's server sales by 2015.

Larson's admission that Intel is planning to launch a modified Atom processor under the Xeon brand is a double-edged sword for the chip giant. It highlights just how solid a brand Intel has with Xeon, but it raises the possibility that lightweight processors will push out larger chips, just like the Xeon did with RISC chips and by Larson's own admission, Intel's Itanium.