End of an era? Intel’s tick-tock CPU development ending

As reported by PC Perspective, Intel is ending their “tick-tock” CPU cadence, where they would alternate between a new manufacturing process node (tick) and a new architecture (tock). Intel has been keeping to their schedule for quite a few years now but recently as they’ve moved towards sub-10nm processes their release schedule has slipped, most notably with Broadwell. Broadwell was the shrink to 14nm but the desktop chips released just a few months before it’s tock successor, Skylake. With the previous cadence, Skylake would have been followed by a shrink to 10nm but instead we’re getting Kaby Lake, a refinement of the Skylake architecture, still at 14nm.

This looks to be Intel’s strategy going forward, with 3 product releases per process node. The last several generations of desktop CPUs have been relatively boring, with just incremental improvements in performance, hopefully this new development schedule doesn’t make things even less interesting for desktop users looking to regularly upgrade.

Thoughts? Discuss them here.