Vivian Lien Joins Intel to Build Arc Discrete Graphics Business

Vivian Lien at Intel
(Image credit: Vivian Lien)

Vivian Lien has announced (opens in new tab) that she has joined Intel’s Visual Compute Group. Lien was most recently a VP of Alienware and Dell Gaming, but became a name at the forefront of PC industry marketing during her lengthy spell at Asus. In her new position, Lien aims to build the fortunes of the Intel Arc discrete graphics business, and she looks like a good choice for this role. Incidentally, this high profile appointment looks like another nail in the coffin to the rumors suggesting the demise or running down of the Intel Arc discrete graphics business.

Lien built her name and reputation at Asus, leading the PC and components giant’s marketing efforts for years. The PC industry partnerships built during her rise through Asus (ending up as Global Head of Marketing, Gaming), will have been instrumental in becoming a VP at Alienware and Dell Gaming. PC industry watchers will note that Lien’s appointment at Alienware and Dell was to fill the significant void precipitated by Frank Azor’s move to AMD gaming.

(Image credit: Vivian Lien)

Now it looks like Intel has need of Lien’s experience and extensive partnerships in the gaming PC business. If Intel truly wants to succeed in commercializing discrete graphics cards, selling into pre-built machines is as vitally important as selling to PC DIYers, enthusiasts and gamers.

In her LinkedIn post about her new role at Intel, Lien said that at the time of the announcement she has already enjoyed her first week with the Intel graphics team. “I can't wait to build the Intel Arc graphics business,” she wrote, before promising “much more to come.” So, it looks like Lien will be important to promoting and the success of Intel Arc Battlemage discrete graphics cards, as well as getting Intel PC building partners to pre-install these products. Of course, Battlemage needs to be a worthwhile step above Alchemist, and competitive with AMD and Nvidia products, too.

Sign of Confidence in the Intel Arc Graphics Cards Business

Lien’s high profile Intel appointment is important for another reason. During the summer, rumors swelled regarding the winding down of the Intel Arc discrete graphics business. Intel execs were reasonably fast to deny any impending closure or scaling back of Arc development, but their denials and rebuttals weren’t believed by everyone.

Mark Tyson
Freelance News Writer

Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.

  • InvalidError
    Great, Intel throwing more money at marketing to "fix" its hardware and driver development issues. Maybe things would work better if Intel made sure it had something actually worth marketing before ramping up marketing staffing. In this market of out-of-control GPU prices, all Intel really needs to do to "market" its GPUs is undercut the competition with the best GPUs it can realistically put out for a given price until they are good enough to actually compete.
    Reply
  • cyrusfox
    How will MLID respond to this contradiction to his prognostication of the end of dGPU consumer Arc? Hope Intel can stick around as a third player, it is hard to break in to an established market.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    cyrusfox said:
    Hope Intel can stick around as a third player, it is hard to break in to an established market.
    Breaking into the GPU market when your company already has 20+ years worth of patents to ward GPU patent trolls with shouldn't be too hard. Where Intel really screwed itself with Alchemist is by aiming too high at the high-end and too low at the low-end, leaving with nothing really worth talking about at either end once all of the driver woes are factored in unless you bought it for one of the few things it does better than AMD and Nvidia.

    The A380 needed to be about 20% faster to consistently make sense next to the RX480, RX5500, RX6500, GTX1650S, etc. which would have enabled Intel to charge $20-30 extra for it and the $290 A750 makes very little sense next to the $220 RX6600.

    Had Intel been a little more aggressive at the low end where it came closest to making perfect sense in this crazy GPU market, it could have been great. The low-end is also likely more tolerant of less-than-perfect drivers and game compatibility in bleeding-edge games.
    Reply
  • ikernelpro4
    The problem is people are bat-crazy stupid.

    How can companies and footballers nowadays be considered lying when they are literally THE source??

    I am sick and tired of people painting their own picture despite the very source, they are specularting about, giving a definitive answer.

    "Hey, instead of believing the people in question, let's trust some random twitter and internet users with zero affiliation to anything. and continue to speculate despite there being a DEFINITIVE answer".

    People are either dumber or as deaf and ignorant as a coat of paint...
    Reply
  • -Fran-
    ikernelpro4 said:
    The problem is people are bat-crazy stupid.

    How can companies and footballers nowadays be considered lying when they are literally THE source??

    I am sick and tired of people painting their own picture despite the very source, they are specularting about, giving a definitive answer.

    "Hey, instead of believing the people in question, let's trust some random twitter and internet users with zero affiliation to anything. and continue to speculate despite there being a DEFINITIVE answer".

    People are either dumber or as deaf and ignorant as a coat of paint...
    There's a reason why trials exist: you can't trust everyone when they have a reason to lie.

    I'm not saying MLiD is right on this one, but your premise is already flawed. Otherwise scams wouldn't exist.

    As for the news themselves. Well, I can't help but have the same exact knee-jerk reaction as InvalidError. On the other hand, they probably just can't throw more engineers are the problems they have? I don't know. Intel won't tell us anything or their shares will drop and people will get sued XD

    Regards.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    -Fran- said:
    As for the news themselves. Well, I can't help but have the same exact knee-jerk reaction as InvalidError. On the other hand, they probably just can't throw more engineers are the problems they have?
    Depends on what sort of bottleneck they are bashing their skulls on. Based on the sorts of issues Alchemist ran into at launch, I'd guess Intel came tragically short in the QA and validation testing departments. Probably needs a couple of test and validation engineers to create more test cases.
    Reply
  • Kamen Rider Blade
    InvalidError said:
    Depends on what sort of bottleneck they are bashing their skulls on. Based on the sorts of issues Alchemist ran into at launch, I'd guess Intel came tragically short in the QA and validation testing departments. Probably needs a couple of test and validation engineers to create more test cases.
    I think they need alot more than just that, they're just 20+ years behind nVIDIA & AMD/ATi.

    It's going to take a sisphyean effort to climb that mountain in record time.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    Kamen Rider Blade said:
    I think they need alot more than just that, they're just 20+ years behind nVIDIA & AMD/ATi.
    While it may be possible to break large problems into smaller pieces so you can have more people working on them, there are still limits to how far that can go before you have so many people that they cannot get anything done without tripping on someone else's feet. Question is how close is their current setup to those practical limits.
    Reply
  • Kamen Rider Blade
    InvalidError said:
    While it may be possible to break large problems into smaller pieces so you can have more people working on them, there are still limits to how far that can go before you have so many people that they cannot get anything done without tripping on someone else's feet. Question is how close is their current setup to those practical limits.
    That's something we won't know, despite the army of GPU Engineers that Intel has hired.

    I'm still rooting for them, but from everything I've heard from insider leaks, the GPU division is on VERY THIN ICE and the upper management wants to pull the plug on them while Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger is fighting to keep them.

    The Consumer gaming division is the one specifically that is on "VERY THIN ICE".

    The Professional/Enterprise GPU side is fine and isn't in danger at the moment.

    The Professional/Enterprise GPU side will continue marching to the beat of their own drum as long as they can find buyers for their GPU's.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    InvalidError said:
    Based on the sorts of issues Alchemist ran into at launch, I'd guess Intel came tragically short in the QA and validation testing departments. Probably needs a couple of test and validation engineers to create more test cases.
    Maybe their QA was also based in Russia:

    https://www.semiaccurate.com/2022/09/02/why-is-intels-gpu-program-having-problems/
    Reply