AMD sues Intel over alleged monopoly abuses

...Now here's a role reversal and a sign of AMD's continued success (ironically). Over at AMD's website the company has laid out its case for suing Intel in a suit files in Delaware but it boils down to Intel's general dominance of several markets across the world over nearly 40 countries alledging the tying-in of manufacturers so they only stuck to building PCs using Intel technology, primarily processors.

The suit follows investigations by competition authorities in Japan and the European competition's investigations into Intel's monopolistic behaviour. In the case of the Japanese charges from the Fair Trade Commission of Japan, Intel has not mounted a defence against the charges, while the slow wheels turn in Europe, but a Microsoft-style doomsday fine is expected if Intel is found guilty.

So, AMD probably has a good case. The problem here with this argument, is choice. The company has grown larger and some of its moves in recent times, like launching a new chip with a different socket to the others requiring users to buy new boards (FX-55), mirrors Intel's action with the Pentium launch a decade ago, so this underdog isn't above acting exactly like the company it's suing, when it suits them. The company remains the gamer's and overclocker's choice (and let's face it, when they blow up their chips more often that's how sales will rise) and has an even more positive reputation for reliability once it began to tackle heat issues - it didn't want any more "frying Athlon" videos circulating around the internet.

Depending on the time period covered by the lawsuit, there's the risk of a lack of sympathy among users, who are more clued up every day - A stupid jingle is no longer enough to clinch an Intel purchase in an age when both chip makers state clockspeed no longer matters, and leisure computing requires power which Intel has struggled to provide at a reasonable price. The other irony is that some of the manufacturers have since been taken over (with HP buying Compaq) or suffered poor financial performance due to uncompetitive hardware (Gateway retreating to America). AMD needs to take care that further changes to the market won't kill their image as hardworking underdog made good and making better with every new range.

Read all about AMD's argument here and for other details, see AMD's site.