Is Haswell the Last Interchangeable Intel Client Processor?

@ 2012/11/27
The processor-motherboard combination as PC enthusiasts know it could end, with Intel LGA1150 processors under the "Haswell" micro-architecture, likely to becoming the last client processors to ship in the retail channel (processor-in-box). Future Intel client processors, codenamed "Broadwell" could ship only in BGA (ball-grid array) packages, with existing motherboard vendors selling their products with processors permanently soldered onto them. The information comes from Japanese PC Watch, which cites sources in the PC industry.

With a compacted socket-processor launch cycle that spans nearly 2 years under the company's "tick-tock" product strategy, the scope for processor updates in the client computing industry might be lower than what it was in the LGA775 days. Perhaps statistics at Intel don't show a sizable proportion of people upgrading processors on existing motherboards, or upgrading motherboards while retaining the processor, rather buying a combination of the two, not to mention the fact that pre-built PCs outsell DIY assembled ones in major markets. With the processor being "tied" to the motherboard, Intel gets room to compact the platform further, combining processor and core logic completely into a single package. It's likely that Intel could still leave processor interchangeability to its HEDT (high-end desktop) platform, which sees processors start at $300, and motherboards at $200.

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