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Intel Ditches Itanium 2 Brand

Santa Clara (CA) - Intel is rebranding its mainframe processor, TG Daily has learned.

The manufacturer told vendors that it is getting rid of the "Itanium 2" brand and will be replacing it with "Itanium" beginning March 2, 2008. "In order to comply with our new branding strategy, [Itanium 2 parts] will undergo a part mark change. The part will no longer be marked with Intel Itanium 2 but will now be marked Intel Itanium," the company wrote in a recently published product change notification.

The Itanium 2 brand was introduced with the 180 nm McKinley core in July 2002, about one year after the debut of the original Itanium, which was code-named Merced. The branding change affects the entire current 90 nm (Montvale) Itanium 2 family, which includes eleven dual core versions (model 9015 to 9150M) as well as two single-core versions (9010, 9110N).

The branding change should carry over to the next processor generation: The 65 nm Tukwila is expected to be released in late 2008 as Intel’s first 2-billion transistor processor. The CPU will have four cores, run at up to 2 GHz, integrate 30 MB of L2 cache and offer a 96 GB/s processor-to-processor bandwidth through the firm’s new "QuickPath" interconnect. Intel recently said that that Tukwila processor will offer about twice the performance of Montvale, while consuming about 25% more power (Tukwila is rated at a 130 watt TDP).