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Intel will phase out its Verified by Intel initiative, designed to ensure standardization and interchangeability of notebook parts across suppliers, by the middle of 2008, the company said Oct. 11.

The notebook market has matured to the point that the VBI program is no longer necessary for system builders, said Steve Dallman, manager of worldwide reseller channel organizations at Intel.

“The market is mature enough that we don’t have to test peripherals to make sure that they work with notebooks. That can really be left up to the ODMs at this point,” Dallman said.

The VBI program was started three years ago in response to system builder requests for a centralized support and sparing program for components from multiple suppliers, Dallman said. According to Intel, of Santa Clara, Calif., barebones that have been Verified by Intel are designed and tested for interchangeability and to ensure they meet basic performance requirements for battery life, wireless antennas, and system thermals.

“Our channel partners said their problems were, ‘We don’t know these suppliers, we don’t have access to service and support,’” Dallman said.

The VBI initiative provided one-stop access to that service and support, and allowed system builders to verify that equipment from various ODMs would work within the barebone notebook chassis they were building, he said.

The VBI initiative is aligned closely with Intel’s Common Building Block initiative, which ensures notebook ingredients are interchangeable across notebook platforms, according to Intel. Once standardization is in place, these common building block components are designed and tested for interchangeability, the company said. The Common Building Block Initiative will not be phased out, Dallman said.

“We’re going to continue to evangelize the CBBs to make sure that standard components are available for system builders,” he said.

All VBI products currently in the market continue to be covered under their original or extended warranty programs, Dallman said, and that service and support will extend through those products’ lifecycles. Once Intel introduces its next-generation chip sets in mid-2008, support and service for VBI products will end, he said.