No, Intel didn't confirm its discrete Xe GPUs will support ray tracing

Intel said translation errors may have lead some to believe its upcoming graphics card will have ray tracing support.

Credit: Intel

And...it’s gone. Recent reports that Intel had confirmed ray tracing support in its Xe graphics cards are wrong, a company spokesman said Friday.

News broke earlier this week that a briefing given to analysts in Tokyo had confirmed hardware ray tracing support in Intel’s upcoming Xe consumer graphics cards. It turns out the presenter never confirmed ray tracing support, and in fact, never even mentioned ray tracing, an Intel spokesman said.

So how did multiple tech news sites come to believe it had been confirmed? Blame machine translation of a news story covering the Intel presentation. Intel officials said they believe computer-based translations of a Japanese language story on MyNavi.jp somehow conflated what was essentially a rehashed graphics presentation with the site’s speculation on upcoming graphics features in Tekken 7 into “ray tracing in Xe confirmed.” Intel says the presentation never mentioned ray tracing, nor did it “refer to the Xe graphics architecture found in Tiger Lake processors as ‘Gen 12’,” as some sites reported.

Does that mean Intel’s upcoming Xe graphics won’t have hardware ray tracing support? Well, no, not really. While Intel is out mopping up a mess created by Google translate, it’s also not specifically saying what features Xe will have either. 

This isn’t the only time Intel has to clean up a miss due to translation issues. In early August, gamers were buzzing when a YouTube interview with Intel graphics chief Raja Koduri said the company’s first Xe graphics would cost “$200.” In fact, Koduri didn’t say that. The Russian YouTube channel that conducted the interview had mistranslated the interview while dubbing over Koduri’s words. It has since deleted the video.

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Gordon Mah Ung

PC World (US online)
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