Intel Accused of Threats and Bribery

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Intel is has been accused of using a combination of “bribery and threats” to gain its current position in the processor market, according to a legal suit filed yesterday.

intel-logo

Interestingly enough, the BBC is reporting that the New York Attorney General has accused Intel of “bribery and coercion” in its attempts to push manufacturers into using its products rather than those of its competitors (which is, let’s face it, basically AMD). The bad news for Intel is that this latest accusation hits while it’s waiting to face a suit from AMD set to hit in March of 2010…

According to Cnet, the whole AMD case is something Intel says it doesn’t need to worry about, as it’s the same case as was once brought against it by the EU, or at least, so Intel is claiming. According to an Intel spokesman, “Neither consumers—who have consistently benefited from lower prices and increased innovation—nor justice are being served by the decision to file this case now.”

Word from the Attorney General has been that, “Intel’s actions not only unfairly restricted potential competitors, but also hurt average consumers who were robbed of better products and lower prices.”

The real question for many will be just what has Intel been offering in the way of bribery as well as what threats were made. If the figures are to be believed, Dell has been on the receiving end of more money from Intel than anyone else, with the complaint against Intel intoning that the company has received around $6 billion in ‘rebates.’

Perhaps most damning is the line from the document that alleges that, “Most of this money was furnished to Dell under programs initially titled ‘MOAP’ and then ‘MCP.’” ‘MOAP’ is said to have been an acronym standing for ‘Mother of all Programs,’ while MCP can simply be read as ‘Meet Competition Payments.’

Certainly if anything in the suit sticks then Intel could stand to lose an awful lot of credibility and its fairly solid reputation. Moreover, the fact that this has become such mainstream news will doubtless reflect poorly on Intel’s public image regardless of whether or not anything comes of the case itself.

If you’d like to read more you’d do well to check out the BBC’s piece on the topic, which is quite detailed.

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One Response to “Intel Accused of Threats and Bribery”

  1. Thomas Mc Gonnell Says:

    Regardless of whether they did that or not(I wouldn’t be surprised if they did though). Surprise surprise Dell getting in on the act too.

    I tip my hat to AMD for still being in the market even though such a small share of the market they have. And they have some great processors(and well GPU’s now it seems).

    Shady tactics like this make the company look bad, but honestly. I’ll look past that when it comes to buying parts, and if Intel did this or not, it still doesn’t change the fact that their CPU’s are better than anything else out there.

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