Intel is preparing to roll out its new Software-Defined Silicon (SDSi) mechanism that will allow its Xeon processors to install new features and updates immediately after purchase. Intel’s Sapphire Rapids will be the first series of chips to introduce this feature and target workstations, servers and other large-scale devices.
These extra features and upgrades will cost you extra money, and this isn’t the first time Intel has blocked processor features behind a paywall. In 2010, Intel started the “Intel Upgrade Service” and added extra clock speed and extra cache to some Core i3 processors if you paid extra.
This feature was never a success and was discontinued by Intel after a serious backlash. The internet was raging about the impact of microtransaction hardware design. Microtransactions are also not appreciated by the gamer community where you have to pay extra for skins and content, especially for a game that you have already paid for.
And it seems that history is repeating itself. Eric Kosovec, a coder on GitHub said:
It’s only a matter of time before you bring this to end-user CPUs and we have to pay monthly to overclock or even pay per month of usage. You as developers should be ashamed of yourselves.
Between Intel SDSi and AMD PSB (which locks CPUs across platforms), it’s an uphill battle to choose which is the most retarded, anti-consumer feature.
— Danilo "18pF flip flops" Cominotti (@dcominottim) February 10, 2022
Intel doesn’t reveal much information about its new processors, and also defends the backlash it’s currently receiving. The company’s new SDSi program is expected to roll out in the spring of 2022.
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