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32BitsOnline: The X-Box cometh

Mar 30, 2000, 16:40 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Christopher Robato Yao)

"Lo, and behold, after years of mystery and rumor, Microsoft turned its game console player from rumored vaporware to official vaporware. Rumors were rampant that AMD would supply the CPU; the bombshell now was that it would be Intel's. The graphics system is equally speculated; now it's graphics giant nVidia."

"The dropping of AMD is not a surprise - AMD is not willing to sell CPUs with no margins, and industry giant Intel seems better equipped than AMD to fabricate entire systems beyond CPUs. Intel also makes motherboards, chipsets, and even network chips; it has the advantage of synergy that AMD cannot produce. Intel presently has bad yields with the Coppermine Pentium IIIs, but it is expected that, by the time X-Box is to be introduced, those problems will have been dealt with. The processor is a derivative of the present Pentium III 600e "Coppermine" (which actually is made with no copper, unlike some new Athlons)."

"...there is another reason why Gates admires the Nintendo way of doing things. With PCs, the PC manufacturer only pays Microsoft for every copy of the operating system that goes into every PC. That means one PC, one OS. Each piece of software you buy for that PC need not pay Microsoft for licensing dues. Microsoft only gets "After Windows" revenue with the sale of its own branded software, like Office, not so with Nintendo, Sony or Sega. Each game disk or cartridge has a copy of the console operating system itself, other than the BIOS ROM embedded in the system itself. That means every console game sold has to pay a license to Nintendo, Sony or Sega. Thus, the console makers can afford to lose money on the hardware, because they make money on each and every piece of software sold for that machine."

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