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AMD Calls on Microsoft for Intel Antitrust Case 84

Rob writes "As part of its ongoing antitrust case against its chief rival Intel Corp, AMD said it had subpoenaed Microsoft Corp for documents pertaining to its case." From the article: "AMD filed subpoenas with 32 companies, asking them to retain and forward documentation that may pertain to the lawsuit, including computer companies, microprocessor distributors, and electronics retailers. Most of these companies agreed to comply with AMD's requests, including Acer, Gateway, Lenovo, NEC, Sony, Sun Microsystems, Tech Data Corp., and Circuit City. The only firm that refused to cooperate with AMD in any capacity was Toshiba, although others have been slow to respond."
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AMD Calls on Microsoft for Intel Antitrust Case

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  • Right now (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @12:37PM (#15150291)
    Microsoft has a bunch of reasons to give up any info they have to hurt Intel if possible. With Intel's recent gung-ho approach and partnering with RH and SuSE anything to hurt them would benefit MS in some small way. Don't be surprised if Ballmer hand delivers the documents himself.
    • Yeah, but the sheer irony of it's like seeing Senator <senator> on an Ethics panel...
      • It makes one wonder also if the Intel/Apple alliance will have any bearing on Microsoft's decision to give them any help. One other thing to note is Microsoft's lackluster support of Intel 64 Bit processors, but their huge support of AMD 64 bit processors.
    • Don't be surprised if Ballmer hand delivers the documents himself.

      The documents, no doubt, will be included with the chair...
    • Re:Right now (Score:2, Insightful)

      by hihihihi ( 940800 )
      I think it is not wether they agree to hand-over the documents is that big of an issue, also matters is what and which documents to submit.
      there is always a possibility that they may actually start hading over only documents which might have some beneficial value for them in some or the other ways.
      the same also holds true for all other corporations who have agreed. between disclosing and non-disclosure, there is always a chance of willfull partial disclosure for own benefit.
      AMD must be extra-carefull.
    • by wbren ( 682133 )
      Don't be surprised if Ballmer hand delivers the documents himself.

      Oh Ballmer won't just "deliver" them, not in the traditional sense. He will duct tape the documents to a chair and throw it at Intel, thereby "f**king killing" Intel.

      Oops! Wrong corporation...
    • Re:Right now (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Chr0nik ( 928538 )
      WinAMD, or even better, linAMD, just doesn't have the same ring to it as wintel.

      Oh well, never too fond of either companies business practices.

      I don't know which hi-tech corporate quarrel I like best, there are so many that evoke such varied emotional responses.

      AMD vs. Intel, great I've always been a fan of the underdog, but AMD has had their day in the sun coming for a long time.

      I do however find it ironic that Microsoft and Intel are all slings and arrows these days.. As both companies sti
    • Re:Right now (Score:1, Interesting)

      by PastAustin ( 941464 )

      Microsoft has a bunch of reasons to give up any info they have to hurt Intel if possible. With Intel's recent gung-ho approach and partnering with RH and SuSE anything to hurt them would benefit MS in some small way. Don't be surprised if Ballmer hand delivers the documents himself.

      Microsoft also has a lot of reasons to not cooperate with AMD. They work practically side-by-side with OpenSuSE and do all sorts of kernel optimization for their hardware with Linux.

      Microsoft doesn't have too many friend

  • ...! w00t (Score:1, Funny)

    by arashf ( 940486 )
    gogo amd
  • Payback Time (Score:5, Interesting)

    by NutscrapeSucks ( 446616 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @12:40PM (#15150330)
    Intel testified against Microsoft in their anti-trust trial. AMD testified in support of Microsoft's monopoly. I'm sure that Microsoft will be happy to return these favors.
    • Ah yes, it's good to see large multinationals resorting to playground ethics...

      Wasn't it Gandhi who said; "Eye for an eye leaves everyone blind"?
    • Re:Payback Time (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Bamafan77 ( 565893 )
      I'm interested in slashdotter's opinions on current antitrust legislature. Should the government step in when vendors have the ability to dictate prices/terms to people who control sales channels or should other businesses be forced anticipate these actions and so innovate in different ways (new channels, lower prices, new tech, etc) to get their sales?
      • I think when a company becomes more like a bunch of armed thugs threatening you about using someone else's product and less like a vendor... Then yeah.
        • "I think when a company becomes more like a bunch of armed thugs threatening you about using someone else's product and less like a vendor"

          Well, they're in no shape or form like "armed thugs". That's just being sensationalistic. The vendor presents the channel operator with a set of terms and the channel operator is free to comply or ignore them (naturally, one choice may make more business sense than another). Competing vendors and channel operators have to think of creative solutions around this road

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @12:42PM (#15150342)
    From TFA:

    "AMD may be requesting documents from Microsoft that show that Intel tried to convince the software company not to support x86 64-bit in Windows. This might be a tricky thing to prove, as Microsoft has offered 64 bit versions of Windows for both Itanium and x86 64-bit for some time now."

    And also, that Microsoft is complying with the request.

    I wish summaries are more complete. Only if wishes were horses....
  • Yipee? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @12:44PM (#15150349)
    *looks at green badge around neck*.... I guess this is good.

    Personally I'm happy for AMDs courage of conviction not just because of where I work ... [hint hint] and not because it's morally superior but because it's good for the gander.

    Intel is not evil but they do have an awful stance of we're the best and there is no reason to consider anyone else. They demonstrate this by the way they package their kits (e.g. you need an Intel northbridge/southbridge) to the way they develop software (IPP is not friendly on AMD nor is ICC). They'll claim it's for superior performance but consider AMD.

    AMDs stance is they want as many people developing around AMD as possible. This is why VIA and Nvidia (to name two) are major developers of chipsets. AMD is partnered with development shops (won't say which) where the attitude is "be great on AMD but not at the expense of being great on Intel". Basically we want the best performance we can get so long as we don't create problems for the competition.

    I hope other companies can stand up and just admit for a change that competition is great, it's a good idea and furthermore the future of the computing industry demands it.

    Vive la choix!

    • Re:Yipee? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by southpolesammy ( 150094 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @01:05PM (#15150557) Journal
      Basically we want the best performance we can get so long as we don't create problems for the competition.

      Surely you mean end user?
      • No, he means Intel. What I gather he's getting at is AMD wants developers to code their programs to work better on AMD systems, but Intel systems will still run it without trouble. Intel may not run it as smoothly/quickly, but it will be stable and functional.

        A positive experience for the end user is the goal, AMD would prefer AMD chips provide that experience, but they don't want anyone to suffer if they use Intel.

        You see it with ATI and Nvidia. Some games have a "Designed to run with ATI" but they'll stil
      • I think he meant what he said. "Make it run better on ours WITHOUT making it run worse on theirs."

        In other words, differentiating your product make making yours better, rather than making the comptetion's seems worse. Playing fair. More or less.
    • I don't see this as good at all. And I don't say this because of where _I_ work...

      Competition is good. That I can see. AMD did show up Intel more than a few times and Intel is responding and changing. That's what business and competition is all about. I have to admit that I lost some respect for AMD once they did this. I have always thought that they provided good processors at good prices and at times I have even bought AMD. But the lawsuit? I don't think so.

      Think about this, AMD fanboys. If Intel were to
      • Except there would be morehn enough people offering them loans for them to quickly ramp up production. Maybe a year of tight proc. production, possibly 1.5. Not any more really, especially since they'd be able to buy and convert Intel's facilities.
    • I hope keeping anonymity wasn't too important, tomstdenis (446163).
      Signing an AC post isn't terribly helpful if you wish to remain anonymous.
    • Excuse me for saying this...but that "packaging" you refer to, buy our cpu, our northbridge, and our south bridge.......heck, even buy our a GoodThing(tm).

      I have had various AMD-based boards over the years, and the reliability of an AMD processor, various chipset and foreign motherboard manufacturers has been half baked to say the least. I've heard its gotten better, HOWEVER......this has convinced myself and many others I know NOT to buy AMD until AMD offers a total, 100% guarenteed and bac
  • Do We Pay? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MudButt ( 853616 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @12:56PM (#15150466)
    FTFA"As the Intel-AMD lawsuit drags on, there's no telling what kind of picture the documents it brings to light will eventually paint about the computer industry."

    Every time I see these antitrust lawsuits "drag on" in the news, I wonder how much of the cost of these fights gets passed onto us, the consumer? It must cause a ripple effect when Company A sues Company B which impacts Companies C, D, etc. in terms of attorney fees, internal audit, research, and strategic analysis. Are we footing the bill?
    • Be gratefull, now your shoe shining business can charge those lawyers more, it's the "trickle down effect".
    • Are we footing the bill?

      Of course. But the real question is, do we pay more if a company is allowed to abuse a monopoly?
    • Competition is costly. If nobody's interests overlapped there would be no litigation, crime, war, divorce, etc. It's just the price humans pay due to the fact that there's more than one of us. So basically, of course we're footing the bill.
    • What do you mean, are we footing the bill? If you mean does AMD generate revenue by selling things, and then use a portion of that revenue for the lawsuits, then, well.. duh. There's no AMD Legal Offense fund accepting donations that I'm aware of. I doubt their attorneys are working pro bono.

      If you meant is AMD jacking up prices to subsidize their legal campaign, well, perhaps, but that question is equally meaningless. You'd really need to do a study of price including past and present depreciation, and
    • What do you think companies are going to do with their money anyway - give it to charity, spend it all on research to make the world a better place? This is the cost of doing business.
    • Good question. When a patient wins a malpractice case, who foots the bill? The doctor? Nope. The doctor just pays a smaller fine or loses his license, not the big multi-million dollar award. Probably all doctors' Malpractice Insurance fees go up tho. Can't imagine why health care costs are always going up.

      Who's going to repay all the money lost by Enron employees? The upper management folks? Nope, they already spent it and won't be pulling in even a six-figure from salary behind bars. (Assuming that happens
  • Innovate or Sue? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by jadavis ( 473492 )
    I lose respect for any company that engages in lawsuits like this.

    AMD has great products, and they are succeeding in the marketplace. A lawsuit just seems to come from jealousy. Why not spend their efforts competing with better products?

    I know everyone is thinking about things like Intel's market control. But AMD is big enough to stand on its own feet and just keep going.

    A nice, clear-cut lawsuit that acheives a real remedy can be healthy for a company, and is sometimes very necessary. But this type of liti
    • They've had better products for a long time. They've been innovative. As I understand it, all they want is a fair chance at getting a major computer vendor contract, like with Dell for example.
      • I understand your point, but just to play devil's advocate:

        Dell must pick someone. I suppose they could offer both chips, but they don't want to confuse their customers, or their tech support personnel. Is whoever Dell picks the monopolist?

    • Re:Innovate or Sue? (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Well, Gateway doesn't sell AMD on it's website, Dell sells AMD no where. Dell is one of the best selling computers. Dell and intel have a contract I don't know the terms but I'm pretty sure dell is prohibited from selling AMD computers and Intel offers deep discounts. So basically the consumer has no choice. Some companies and universities offer a % off any dell computer. They must select between celerons , p4, pD, xeons or whatever it is that they have.
    • by vodkamattvt ( 819309 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @01:13PM (#15150661) Homepage
      AMD has been doing just what you are saying for years. They *have* had the best CPUs for years now. If the playing field were even, AMD would already be in a position where this lawsuite would not even make sense.

      The playing field is *far* from even. Intel had such dominance for so long, and cuts deals to specifically hamper AMD that this lawsuite is needed.

      I dont see any stagnation in their drive for innovation. What they are doing is making sure their efforts are not wasted on a marketplace in which Intel has created barriers all over the place to stop AMD market penetration. Why would you continue to innovate just to sell chips in a market where you can never hope to compete with an Intel that violates anti-Trust and keeps you from competing in the marketplaces that you need.

      • by NutscrapeSucks ( 446616 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @01:30PM (#15150831)
        AMD has been doing just what you are saying for years. They *have* had the best CPUs for years now. If the playing field were even, AMD would already be in a position where this lawsuite would not even make sense.

        "Best" is a blanket statement.

        Most industry analysts believe that Intel's costs are far below AMD's, which gives Intel much more negotiating room with major OEMs. That is, Intel can sell CPUs cheaper than AMD and still make money. This makes Intel's CPUs "best" for large OEMs like Dell even when AMD is cheaper in the retail market.

        Also, AMD has marketed itself as the "alternative for low-end cheap people", even when they had faster products on the market. This effectively cut them out of high-value segements of the market. It's only recently that AMD has been somewhat successful selling into the server and workstation markets.
      • You are right- the playing field is not even, but not for the reasons you are thinking. The dirty little secret of the semiconductor industry is that it is more about manufacturing than it is about the actual features that are on your chips. Nobody else in the industry can hold a candle to Intel's manufacturing capabilities. Its not even close. From 300mm wafers to 65nm-going-on-45nm Fabs all over the world, they are in their own league. When we are talking about the volume that companies like Dell and
        • Yeah, most people miss the mass-manufacturing aspect of semiconductors. It has _never_ been about how fast your chip is. You can essentially make the fastest CPU you want.... that is if you want to spend $1,000,000 to manufacture one chip, and that's just the manufacture it, not even counting design costs. The important thing is who can mass manufacture something at the lowest cost? Intel still has the advantage here over AMD. Not only that, but they have more money to spend on R&D and building new fabs
    • by zzatz ( 965857 )
      I think that you may be struggling with the essential paradox of antitrust suits. Antitrust law defines a monopoly as one who has market power, where market power is the ability to get away with actions that would cause loss of sales in an ordinary market. Having market power is legal. Anti-competitive behavior is legal, and normally punished by market forces. But anti-competitive acts committed with market power are illegal. The law steps in when normal market conditions fail.

      The paradox is that proof
      • You make some valid legal points. But I'm not sure how many companies really emerge from antitrust lawsuits with any real economic benefit. If I see AMD get some money in the next year or two, and then use it to make amazing products that blow away the market, you (and AMD) will be vindicated. Otherwise, not.
    • Yeah, we're all tired of the lawsuits. But sometimes, they are *required*. Only the court (and maybe objective folks with *all* of the facts) can tell if Intel really has been working AMD over unfairly, or if AMD is just SCO wanna-be.

      *If* Intel has made anti-competitive contracts (Such as, "Only buy our chips or our prices double!"), I'd liked to see them smacked as hard as Microsoft. .... err, ok... maybe this is a pointless waste of time & money.
  • Big Picture (Score:1, Troll)

    by Billosaur ( 927319 ) *
    Interestingly, at the time Windows for x86 64-bit was being developed, there were rumors that such support was a payback for the time AMD's CEO Jerry Sanders testified on behalf of Microsoft for their antitrust suit. As the Intel-AMD lawsuit drags on, there's no telling what kind of picture the documents it brings to light will eventually paint about the computer industry.Everybody is sleeping with everybody else. The enemy of my enemy is my friend. Do unto others before they do unto you. That's the current
  • by digitaldc ( 879047 ) * on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @01:15PM (#15150675)
    AMD filed a lawsuit against rival Intel last July, charging that the chip giant has "unlawfully maintained its monopoly by engaging in a relentless, worldwide campaign to coerce customers to refrain from dealing with AMD."

    There's nothing you can do, there was an Intel inside. The revelation of his presence sent some very bad signals which were chipping away your reputation.
  • by kp2sushi ( 638066 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @01:17PM (#15150694)
    While an antitrust suit against intel is rather interesting, I'm more interested in seeing what cool new chips AMD comes up with next. It has since been AMD's style to come up with next big thing a whole quarter or more before intel brings it to the market. They aren't going to win market share with an antitrust suit, but they may (keyword: may) level the playing field with software and hardware manufacturers a bit. Linux users seem to be AMD's most avid fans; are we not always rooting for the underdog? AMD may not be the underdog for long as they continue to gain market share with their main feature: superior power and engineering at a lower pricepoint than their primary competitor.
    • Linux users seem to be AMD's most avid fans

      Don't forget the gamers. All of the hardcore PC gamers I know wouldn't be caught dead with an Intel CPU in their gaming rig.
    • Intel is rolling out new chips a few months which will out-perform Athlon64, and AMD doesn't have much to respond with. Things look pretty bleak for AMD in the short term, so perhaps this trial really is their best chance to open up the PC market. Even if there's no decision soon, Intel and OEMs will likely be on their best behavior.
  • Microsoft? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by corellon13 ( 922091 ) on Tuesday April 18, 2006 @01:39PM (#15150917)
    Mod me how you will, but something has to be said. After reading these posts, I would have thought this was a fight between Microsoft and Intel. Many of the posts are from people trying to dive into the mind of Microsoft and speculate that this is payback for Intel testifying against them. I have to ask what would happen if Microsoft went along with Toshiba and refused to cooperate? Does the term damned if you do and damned if you don't come to mind?
    • > Mod me how you will

      Do you think there is anything to the allegation that WinTEL tried to lock AMD out of the 'trusted computing' business?
      • My comment is regarding THIS article and the lawsuit between AMD and Intel. My purpose is not to champion Microsoft (as I am not a big fan). However, I see no need to use every lawsuit and opportunity on /. to slam Microsoft for the sake of slamming them. I think this line of thinking and type of comments actually helps Microsoft by making legitimate articles and arguments become just another "M$ bash fest".
      • Or maybe the reverse--tried to force 'trusted computing' on AMD in a way that would cost them the Linux market.
  • Heh, heh heh. That's good stuff. I can hear the shredders, er ... left clicks on the delete buttons, now.

    Just ask the Burst attorneys about Microsoft's email retention policy.
  • Microsoft holds a grudge indeed. All honesty disappears when you're a giant monopoly corporation. Why can't everyone just play fair? AMD will probably be enemies to Intel now, like how Microsoft is. Ah, the circle of corporations.
  • Is it just me or do all these lawsuits remind you of the playground in kindergarten. A lot of Big kids try to convince the small kids to side with them. If only they would just put the two CEO's in a boxing ring and let them go at it to decide the outcome.

Did you hear that two rabbits escaped from the zoo and so far they have only recaptured 116 of them?