Intel's processor history: the path from the Intel 4004 to the Pentium 4

Intel's processor history: the path from the Intel 4004 to the Pentium 4

1981: Intel cooperates with IBM

The first 'personal computers', which were released by Apple in 1976, did not rely on an Intel processor, but on the models of the competitor Motorola, so that Intel again had to reckon with a flop for the 8088, because you could not sell the desired numbers. But from today's perspective, Motorola was not able to supply IBM as well, so IBM decided to equip its PCs with the 8088 from Intel. The first IBM PC thus relied on Intel's 8088 microprocessor. It was also extremely advantageous that IBMreleased its architecture for imitation, paving the way for the 'IBM-compatible PC', which is still known to every PC owner. Due to the supremacy of IBM at the time, many companies expected this architecture to be successful and based their models on this model. However, IBM did not want to commit itself to Intel without any demands and therefore insisted that the architecture of the 8086/88 processors must also serve as the basis for all further developments in order to guarantee downward and upward compatibility. Furthermore, IBM asked for an insight into the product planning of Intel in order to check whether Intel would be able to supply high quantities with good and constant quality in the future. Initially, the contract was 'only' 10,000 processors per year. And with IBM, the 8086, the first classic 16-bit processor from Intel, with the addition of AT (Advanced Technology), made its entry into the PC market again.

Now AMD has also relied on the thoroughbred 16-bit Architecture and presented a specially recreated 8086. At IBM's request, Intel was forced to grant AMD and Siemens extended manufacturing licenses for Intel's x86 family up to 1995.

From now on, Moore's law also applied, which states that the clock rates of the processors double every 18 months. In addition, the number of transistors built into the chip is constantly increasing and the performance increases.

On the next page: 1982: The Intel 80286