An MSI representative has reportedly shared some interesting information about Intel's pending 11th Generation Rocket Lake-S processors over at the Danawa forums. The company has since edited its answer (hat tip to @harukaze5719 (opens in new tab)), but we grabbed a screenshot of the original reply and put it through Google Translate.
Many rumors claim that Intel may announce Rocket Lake-S at CES 2021 but that the processors probably won't hit the market until later. According to the statement, the Rocket Lake-S chips won't be available to the public until the end of March, lending some credibility to the rumors.
Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether there is any validity to the rumor that Intel has given motherboard vendors the green light to reveal their new Z590, B560, and H510 offerings on January 11. Although it is conceivable that current-gen Comet Lake chips will be forward compatible with the new chipsets, an early motherboard launch doesn't seem to make much sense because the new processors wouldn't arrive until late March.
In other news, the statement also seemingly confirms that current 400-series motherboards, including the H410, B460, and Z490 chipsets would support Rocket Lake-S. This doesn't come as shocking news, considering that other motherboard manufacturers, such as ASRock and Biostar, already promote backward compatibility with 400-series motherboards.
As expected, 400-series motherboards will require a simple firmware upgrade to house the new Rocket Lake-S parts, which still dwell on the LGA1200 socket. According to the statement, MSI will prioritize Z490 motherboards first and consequently go down the product stack. Naturally, the company expects to get all its 400-series motherboard on to the new firmware before the Rocket Lake-S launch in March.