We should see Intel’s 4th generation Xeon with vRAN boost come into commercial usage this with operators year based on current trials but the company didn’t mention vRAN much during its earnings call.

Intel reported its fourth quarter results on Thursday night, reporting a profit of $2.67 billion on revenue of $15.4 billion, up 10 percent annually. The market, however, didn’t react well to the chipmaker’s forecast of Q1 2024 revenue of between $12.2 billion to $13.2 billion, missing analyst’s expectations for the quarter, which lead to a stock fall in after-hours trading.

Intel largely focused on artificial intelligence (AI) during its Q4 call. With CEO Pat Gelsinger talking up Intel’s prospects in the field during the question-and-answer session. He referenced Intel’s belief that AI accelerators will start to move from solely high-end GPUs (i.e Nvidia’s sweet spot) to more everyday enterprise tasks.

Leaving aside AI, the chipmaker barely even referenced communications infrastructure, and the virtualized RAN acceleration that Intel is dominant in among cloud-native mobile network operators.

Roy Chua, analyst at AvidThink, however, told Silverlinings that he expected any “market traction” 5G updates to be released closer to Mobile World Congress (MWC) itself.

He noted that Intel’s 4th generation integrated vRAN boost had gone into commercial trials with Verizon and Samsung towards the end of last year. “It was a field trial in Dallas on their commercial network,” Chua commented. “Not at scale yet though.”

This should be a precursor to more commercial launches for the 5G acceleration technology.

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