Intel jumps off Infini-bandwagon

Intel has cancelled its plans to sell chips for Infiniband products, a company spokesman confirmed Friday. One analyst said the move likely isn't a major setback for the emerging I/O technology, which is being supported by several other big vendors.

Infiniband promises to widen the data pipeline between servers, storage equipment and other networked equipment, replacing existing 1G-bps (bit-per-second) PCI-X and Gigabit Ethernet technologies with a switch fabric I/O that will initially offer data rates of 2.5G bps to 10G bps.

Intel had earlier said that it planned to offer silicon chips for use in Infiniband host control adapters (HCAs) that plug into existing PCI and PCI-X slots, but it has now pulled the plug on those efforts.

"We've decided to discontinue work on Infiniband host control adapters," said Intel spokesman Daven Oswalt. "We still strongly support Infiniband and will continue to work with the Infiniband Trade Association and do what it takes to aid successful deployment of Infiniband on the Intel architecture."

Intel believes the "ecosystem" around Infiniband has evolved to a point where its products aren't required for the technology to move forward, he said.

IBM Corp. and Mellanox Technologies Inc., a startup in Santa Clara, California, already offer components for Infiniband equipment. More than 20 other vendors showed Infiniband products at the recent Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco, including Adaptec Inc., Infinicon Systems Inc. and Bandercom Inc.

"Intel is certainly one of the key players in bringing the specification into existence, but a lot of the intellectual property and knowledge actually came from other participants in the Infiniband Trade Association," including IBM and Hewlett-Packard Co., said Nathan Brookwood, principal analyst at Insight 64, in Saratoga, California.

For that reason, Intel's decision to kill its Infiniband product plans, though something of a setback, shouldn't be a major blow to the technology.

"Intel was making a contribution, but they certainly were one of many players," he said.

Intel had been supporting an early "1x" version of the technology, but the industry has since embraced a faster, "4x" version, Brookwood noted.

"From Intel's perspective, they were looking at how to allocate their resources and they saw that there were lots of people who were doing Infiniband," Brookwood said. "They realized they would have to either increase their investment to get to 4x," or scrap their product plans all together.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill


I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?