Intel’s 12th Gen Alder Lake processors introduced several new features to the PC market. BCLK overclocking is now quite effective, raising CPU clocks by over 500MHz if you’re lucky. It’s the first desktop platform to sport DDR5 and PCIe Gen 5 support, beating AMD after losing the race to Gen 4. A hybrid core architecture marks the first heterogeneous core architecture in the PC space with both Gracemont and Golden Cove cores on the same package. Lastly, the DMI interconnect bandwidth has also been doubled for considerably improved I/O capabilities.
However, as a result of sluggish PC sales, Intel is being forced to trim its profit margins by dropping CPU prices every quarter. According to DigiTimes, the 12th Gen lineup has gotten multiple price cuts, now selling 10% below its MSRP. This isn’t something that Intel is known for. Traditionally, the chipmaker has rarely dropped the prices of its contemporary chips.
However, increased competition from AMD and reduced demand from OEMs are forcing Team Blue to further cut the prices of its midrange and upper midrange SKUs yet again. According to market reports, global PC shipments will tumble by 8.2% YoY during the FY2023. In 2010, desktop PC shipments reached 157 million units, a figure that is expected to fall to 70 million by 2025. Tablets have filled the hole left by declining PC sales, rising from 19 million units shipped in 2010, to an expected 140 million in 2025.