Intel accused of plans to lock out the competition

Intel is flirting with the monopolistic ways of old as it tries to muscle out competitors with its second generation chips, it’s being suggested.

A couple of reports surfaced which suggest the world’s biggest chip firm could attract the ire of antitrust watchdogs yet again.

With many concerned that the PC may be on the wane, it is appears that Intel is increasingly desperate to make sure its processors and Ultrabooks give it an unbeatable edge.

DigitalTrends reported on Intel’s deal with CinemaNow, a subsidiary of BestBuy, which totally blocks competitors from streaming Full HD resolution content.

This means rivals will be able to use the service, but they’ll only be able to watch CinemaNow’s library of 15,000 in lower resolutions.  Although it is only one service, it sets a precendent for locking out the competition.

Intel’s integrated anti-piracy technology appeals to big content, so the deal makes sense for the movie industry, and more sense for Intel which, some suggest, wants to be the only chip company to offer 1080p. The exclusivity is bad news for the consumer and the possibility of restrictions on what one chip is able to do.

Intel is pinning its hopes on the Ultrabook form factor. Meanwhile, it has rewarded partners for using its processors in thin notebooks, which has lead some critics to suggest Intel could make manufacturers reliant on reimbursements if they want to turn a profit. Which would not bode well for the competition. 

The Statesman quotes Intel’s Erik Reid, who says  the need to introduce a “broad ecosystem change” with developing devices to rival Apple’s iPad is “not just about what one company is doing”. But it appears that this broad ecosystem change does not extend to AMD

While Intel sets up a $300 million fund to help Ultrabook manufacturers get their devices out, it allegedly says the banner of “Ultrabook” can’t be used with chips other than its own. And that is where the goldmine in Intel’s brand could be. Intel declined to comment on the matter.