A look at how Dell plays AMD
Michael Kanellos at News.com.com has written up a longish (for News.com.com) summary of the would-be love triangle between Intel, Dell, and AMD. The story captures much of the essence of one of the most intriguing ongoing oddities of the IT industry, Dell's constant refusal to use AMD chips while using AMD's presence as bargaining leverage against Intel. However, I don't think it's quite explicit enough about some realities, including Dell's position as the de facto primary distribution arm for Intel and AMD's current superiority on both the desktop and in servers and workstations. Dell execs seem intent on damning AMD with faint, quasi-condescending praise, a tactic that seems out of step with some important current realities.
Of course, with just one fab, AMD can only go so far, and Dell is a huge customer who needs a steady stream of processors. Still, if Dell were committed to offering its customers the very best products, one would think we'd at least see an Opteron-based server or workstation offered on its website.