February 14, 2005
Dell To Offer Intel Dual-Core Technology
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| by Jeff Rowe - Contributing Editor
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Dell To Offer Intel Dual-Core Technology
Dell, the world's leading supplier of desktop and workstation computers, announced its intention to offer Intel's dual-core processor technology on its high-performance personal computers for consumers and businesses.
Dell has worked closely with Intel on the new technology for several years and has successfully tested dual-core processor-based systems in its engineering labs over the past few months.
"Dell is the world's preferred technology provider because we have the ability to bring the benefits of the latest technology to the everyday computer user," said John Medica, senior vice president, Dell Product Group. "Our leadership in the desktop and workstation markets demonstrates Dell's ability to deliver innovative technologies that customers value and appreciate."
With the performance gains provided by dual-core technology, extreme gamers will have the ability to play the most powerful and complex games while running multiple applications concurrently, typically without performance degradation. Multimedia enthusiasts will delight in the ability to watch a DVD while burning music and other digital content simultaneously. Workstation customers will benefit from the ability to multi-task in a complex environment and optimally run multi-threaded applications.
Dell plans to offer Dimension XPS systems and Dell Precision workstations with Intel dual-core processor technology later this year.
Although this announcement from Dell was brief, it has huge implications and offers big opportunities to the engineering software market, especially those engineering applications that are computationally intensive, such as advanced simulation and analysis. On the flip side, though, there are some "hot" engineering challenges that must be addressed.
Intel's dual-core desktop processor plans actually originated from the Pentium 4 (P4) Extreme Edition line. The dual-core P4, code-named "Smithfield," will launch in Q2 of this year, although Q3 is when volume shipments are expected.
The dual-core chips will be based (at least partially) on the NetBurst architecture that forms the basis for the Pentium 4. This should end the speculation that Intel was planning on using older the Pentium III for its dual-core chips. The new dual-core chips, however, will probably combine NetBurst concepts with complementary and appropriate technologies from other Intel chip lines, as well.
On the design challenge side, Intel's dual-core processors will once again push the limits of power consumption and associated heat dissipation - a basic problem of thermodynamics. The Smithfield CPUs are rated at a thermal design power of 130 watts, an increase from other Intel P4 processors, including the Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 3.46-GHz processor (117 watts) and Intel's most power-hungry (and hottest) chip - the Itanium 2 1.6-GHz that consumes 122 watts.
Considering that Smithfield chips integrate two processor cores, a power consumption of 130 watts may not sound like that big a of deal. But, because the Pentium 4 Extreme Edition already runs at the CPU's thermal limits, Smithfield processors almost certainly will require more powerful cooling than the whirling cooling fans used now - a tall engineering task, indeed. Although we are impressed with the potential power of the new dual-core chips, in the overall scheme of things, we question if Intel's strategy is really heading in the right direction with regard to power consumption that is already high.
UGS Exceeds US$1 Billion In Revenues For 2004
UGS, a global provider of product lifecycle management (PLM) software and services, announced it exceeded US$1 billion in revenue for 2004 -- becoming the first company in the new PLM industry to report breaking the $1 billion mark in annual revenues.
Pro-forma financial highlights from the full year 2004 include:
Revenue of US$1,018.9 million, or 14 percent growth over the same period a year earlier.
Overall software revenue growth of 10 percent over the same period a year earlier.
Collaborative Product Development Management (cPDm) revenue growth of 35 percent, including cPDm software revenue growth of 25 percent, over the same period a year earlier.
Operating income of US$200.7 million, or a 37 percent increase over the same period a year earlier.
EBITDA of US$257.8 million, or a 16 percent increase over the same period a year earlier.
Sixty-four enterprise contracts with total contract value of more than US$1 million each.
All of the above figures exclude certain GAAP purchase accounting adjustments relating to the UGS acquisition. These include amortization and depreciation expenses of US$78.0 million and the reduction to revenues of US$40.9 million as a result of writing off deferred revenue. EBITDA includes an unrealized foreign currency gain of US$12.6 million.
Pro forma financial highlights from the fourth quarter 2004 include:
Revenue of US$294.2 million, or 11 percent growth over the same period a year earlier -- marking UGS' sixth consecutive quarter of year-over-year revenue growth.
Maintenance revenues increased 17 percent over the same period a year earlier, reflecting customers' continued confidence in UGS' PLM leadership position.
Software revenues were unchanged from the same period a year ago, reflecting the extraordinary results in Q4 2003.
cPDm revenue growth of 39 percent, including cPDm software revenue growth of 38 percent, over the same period a year earlier - marking the cPDm segment's highest-ever contribution to the company's revenue.
Operating income of US$68.8 million, or a 10 percent increase over the same period a year earlier.
EBITDA of US$82.9 million, which was flat compared to the same period a year earlier.
The signing of 14 enterprise agreements each at a total contract value of US$1 million or greater -- reflecting UGS' continued success with large enterprise engagements.
All of the above 2004 figures also exclude certain GAAP purchase accounting adjustments relating to the UGS acquisition. These include amortization and depreciation expenses of US$32.7 million and the reduction to revenues of US$14.0 million as a result of writing off deferred revenues. EBITDA includes an unrealized foreign currency gain of US$9.5 million.
"Today marks a major milestone for UGS in many ways. We are the first company in the new PLM industry to report reaching the $1 billion mark in revenue, and we continue to increase our market share and profitably grow while always focusing on our customers' success as our number one priority," said Tony Affuso, chairman, CEO and president of UGS.
"A key driver of UGS' strong year-to-date growth is the company's undisputed leadership in the cPDm segment of the PLM market -- the market's highest-growth space. Our cPDm leadership also drives our ability to pursue enterprise-level engagements, which we are now doing in a number of new industries where highly successful companies are transforming their processes of innovation by pioneering PLM's adoption as an enterprise imperative," Affuso said. "We believe the winner in PLM will be the winner in cPDm, and our growth and momentum in cPDm continues to gain steam."
UGS also issued several announcements of major significance to the company:
UGS and HP announced a global program to jointly offer customers a one-stop shop of enterprise level PLM solutions designed to offer quicker time to value. UGS and HP will provide total PLM solutions to more efficiently enable companies to integrate individual components, such as hardware, software, services, integration and support.
UGS and Capgemini U.S. LLC, one of the world's foremost providers of consulting, technology and outsourcing services, today announced an alliance to jointly offer enterprise level industry-leading PLM solutions designed to transform the process of innovation and thus improve efficiency and top line growth.
UGS announced the appointment of Dave Shirk as the company's new Executive Vice President of Global Marketing. The appointment of Shirk, who has held senior-level marketing positions at enterprise software companies including Oracle, Novell and Vignette, completes the organization's business model in which Products, Sales and Marketing each have balanced responsibility for success and will work in close collaboration to reach company goals. Chuck Grindstaff, executive vice president of Products, continues to lead the Products organization, and in October, Jim Milton, executive vice president of Global Sales and Services, joined the
company to guide worldwide Sales.
"Combined with our strong fourth quarter and full year 2004 performance, these announcements underscore both an industry and a company on the move," Affuso said. "UGS' customer commitment remains our most critical attribute. UGS' new alliances highlight our independence and that leading systems integrators see the strong opportunity in the dynamic PLM market. The appointment of Dave Shirk emphasizes our readiness to take the company to an even stronger market position and completes our senior leadership team. UGS jumps into 2005 with confidence in our ability to move to the next level of market leadership."
This has certainly been a good year for the "New UGS." After gaining its freedom through private investment from former parent EDS, the company has acquired some complementary companies and technologies, refocused its attentions on its diverse and comprehensive product lines, and has had strong financial performance, to boot. With almost 4 million licensed seats and over 40,000 customers worldwide, UGS is in an enviable position in the MCAD/PLM space. However, UGS is not alone with regard to its good fortunes, because Dassault Systemes also had strong 2004 financials and growth. Things seem to be heading in the right direction, at least for now in many sectors of the engineering software
business. The global economy has stabilized somewhat compared with the past few years as companies are committing to longer-term projects. This commitment has been accompanied by many of these same companies picking up the pace of their businesses by spending money and investing in new tools and processes. All in all, a pretty good picture, at least for the time being.
Jeffrey Rowe is the editor and publisher of MCADCafé and MCAD Weekly Review. He can be reached here or 408.850.9230.
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-- Jeff Rowe, MCADCafe.com Contributing Editor.