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Intel to pony up $15 for Pentium 4 early adopters

Posted: 04 Nov 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Pentium 4  processor  benchmark 

There is a bit of good news for early adopters of the Pentium 4 processor—codenamed Willamette—because Intel has finally agreed to settle a class action lawsuit, which claimed that the company manipulated benchmark scores for its first-generation P4 chip.

According to the complaint document published by Intel Pentium 4 Settlement, the tech giant "used its enormous resources and influence in the computing industry to, in Intel's own words, 'falsely improve' the Pentium 4's performance scores."

"It secretly wrote benchmark tests that would give the Pentium 4 higher scores, then released and marketed these 'new' benchmarks to performance reviewers as 'independent third-party' benchmarks. It paid software companies to make covert programming changes to inflate the Pentium 4's performance scores and even disabled features on the Pentium III so that the Pentium 4's scores would look better by comparison," the complaint stated.

Intel will pay $15 to customers in the United States, except those in Illinois, who bought a Pentium 4 system between Nov. 20, 2000, and June 30, 2002. The system in question includes a first-generation Willamette P4 or all processors clocked below 2GHz. (In related news: Overcome the embedded CPU performance hurdle)

Don't worry about digging through your decades-old stuff for a purchase receipt because you'll only need to list the model number of the system you purchased.

In addition, Intel will also donate up to $4 million to an education fund as part of its settlement.

Still, the tech giant remains adamant that it didn't manipulate performance benchmark scores for its Willamette processors.

- Jasmine Solana
  EE Times India

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