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It is with much disappointment that we have discovered that Intel will not be manufacturing board-only versions of their 6th generation NUC. Little has been communicated by Intel, the variant mysteriously dropping off the roadmap for the product. Despite attempts to qualify with Intel why this decision has been reached, we are yet to receive any good reason for the decision.
As the leading innovator in the field of NUC, G2 broke new ground when we manufactured the world’s first rack-mount NUC in 2014. Since then, we have continued to develop what has been a highly successful product for us, which provides a solution to many real-world deployment scenarios.
Unfortunately, the ramifications of Intel’s decision will be some level of feature loss between 5th and 6th generation products. Whilst not vast, the primary difference is the ability to use higher performance, more efficient DDR4 memory and the inclusion of Intel Iris graphics which was not present in the previous generation. Whilst small differences now, if this decision from Intel sticks and board-only NUC options are dropped permanently then the gulf in features will become larger over time. Inevitably, this will impact many customers who want to use NUC in non-standard configurations and outside of Intel’s preferred NUC kit alternative. It’s especially frustrating when removing boards from NUC kits to potentially achieve a board-only result actually invalidates the warranty as well. In the meantime, OEMs like G2 will be forced to continue using 4th and 5th generation board-only options to provide innovation outside of the NUC kits Intel is now focussing its efforts on.
It’s a real shame, but rest assured we will continue to put pressure on Intel in every way we can to hopefully overturn this decision.