Bright Side of News came across news that Intel's future "Kittson" Itanium processor will be less impressive than previously announced. Just three months ago the chip giant said that Kittson would be a 22nm chip that shares a common platform (socket/chipset) with the high-end Xeon E7 line, but now the company revised it plan significantly, making Kittson only a minor update over the current Poulson series.
The statement reads:
“Intel has updated the definition of the next generation Itanium® processor, code name “Kittson”. Kittson will be manufactured on Intel’s 32-nm process technology and will be socket compatible with the existing Intel Itanium 9300/9500 platforms, providing customers with performance improvements, investment protection, and a seamless upgrade path for existing systems. The modular development model, which converges on a common Intel® Xeon®/Intel Itanium socket and motherboard, will be evaluated for future implementation opportunities.”
So, instead of a common platform, the next Itanium product will be rather a very minor upgrade to the current lines with backwards compatibility with the existing infrastructure. Given the stagnating development of Itanium a common platform with the much higher volume Xeon E7 line would have made a lot of sense to continue support for the IA-64 architecture CPUs while keeping costs in check and not falling too much behind in terms of platform technology.