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This CPU ban is bad news for AMD and Intel

The Chinese Communist Party has banned Ryzen and Core processors from its government PCs, as distrust grows between China and the US.

An AMD CPU (left) and Intel CPU (right) floating around a globe (center) which has a no entry sign above the continent of Asia

Technological tensions between China and the US show no signs of stopping, as Intel and AMD find themselves the latest companies caught in the diplomatic crossfire following a CPU ban. While this legislation predominantly affects the processor manufacturers, it has consequences for Microsoft and its Windows operating system too.

This ban is not entirely unexpected, as the US enacted an export ban on some of the best graphics cards to China to stifle the country’s ability to effectively harness artificial intelligence. This latest move from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) cites concerns of privacy, with the government dumping AMD and Intel CPUs for homegrown chips.

According to a report in the Financial Times (via WCCFTech), China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology recently issued a list of processors deemed to be compliant with government policies, made up exclusively of Chinese manufacturers. This, naturally, excluded both AMD and Intel, who failed to meet the government’s criteria of “safe and reliable” equipment.

Additionally, some bodies of government have been briefed to shift away from Windows. The alternative preferred by the CCP isn’t known at this time, but a Linux distribution of some description seems like a prime candidate in lieu of a domestically developed option. Both AMD and Intel stand to greatly benefit from strengthening their ties to the US government via the CHIPS and Science Act, understandably stoking tensions with China.

Aside from a loss of revenue, the short-term ramifications for both AMD and Intel should otherwise be minimal. Looking to the future, though, this shift from China could bring unexpected competition. While both companies will be safe in their x86 strongholds, Arm is becoming increasingly popular and powerful, as demonstrated by Apple’s M series CPUs, and could grow more popular among Chinese consumers with no other options.

If you’re looking to ditch your AMD or Intel processor for the best gaming CPU you can find, check out our Ryzen 7 7800X3D review to learn more about our champion chip.