Industry-Wide Push for Lower Electricity Consumption
Intel revealed on Monday at a semiconductor technology conference at Stanford University that its upcoming 'Sierra Forest chip would achieve 240% better performance per watt compared to its current generation of data center chips. This announcement is part of a larger industry movement towards reducing electricity consumption, as data centers powering the internet and online services consume massive amounts of electricity, and tech firms face increasing pressure to maintain or decrease their energy usage.
Competing in a Market Driven by Efficiency
Ampere Computing, a startup founded by former Intel executives, was the first to market a chip optimized for efficient cloud computing work. Intel and its competitor, Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ: AMD), have also announced similar products, with AMD's offering expected to hit the market in June. Intel, which has been losing market share to AMD and Ampere in data centers, confirmed that its 'Sierra Forest' chip is on schedule for release next year.
Intel’s Strategy for Data Center Chips
Intel is for the first time dividing its data center chips into two categories: the "Granite Rapids" chip, which focuses on performance but consumes more power, and the more efficient "Sierra Forest" chip. Ronak Singhal, a senior fellow at Intel, explained that customers could consolidate older software onto fewer computers inside a data center, leading to power savings by moving workloads from multiple servers to a single new chip. This higher density would reduce the total cost of ownership as fewer systems would be needed.