X-bit Labs picked up from Intel's earnings call that production of the Haswell processor will start this quarter, with availability slated for Q1 2013. A news update on DV Hardware about Intel's earnings report will follow later today.
To respond to a weaker than expected demand environment, Intel has taken several actions. In particular, the chipmaker substantially cut wafer starts at its factories in late Q3 2012 and intends to maintain lower factory utilization rates throughout the fourth quarter. Intel projects these factory adjustments to help bring down its total inventory levels by approximately $500 million. At the same time, Intel stressed that despite of lower demand for PCs, it will start initial volume manufacturing of its next-generation Haswell central processing units this quarter, which will cause an uptick of inventory levels.
"We expect an increase in inventory reserves as we start production on our next-generation micro architecture product code-named Haswell, which we expect to qualify for sale in the first quarter of 2013," said Stacy Smith, chief financial officer of Intel.