Back in April, we reported motherboard manufacturer MSI bundling Intel’s Optane cache SSD with a few of its mid-range motherboards. While not free, the bundle would be slightly cheaper than the sum of its parts (buying the board and SSD separately). At the time we predicted that other motherboard vendors could launch similar bundles. It turns out that Intel is indeed coordinating motherboard + Optane SSD bundles.
In a bid to boost sales of its 200-series chipset motherboards and Core “Kaby Lake” processors, Intel is coordinating bundles of motherboards across brands with its Optane cache SSDs. Analysts predict that this could be an inventory-clearing exercise by Intel, because it plans to launch its next-generation Core “Coffee Lake” processors by late-August, 2017. “Coffee Lake” will see the introduction of six-core processor SKUs to Intel’s mainstream-desktop platform, which is currently led by the quad-core i7-7700K “Kaby Lake.”