Internet speculation about the fate of Taiwanese manufacturer Abit has been running at feverish paces this week. But as Obi-Wan Kenobi might say, the alleged death of the company is correct--from a certain point of view. The manufacturer, known throughout the computing circles for its motherboard offerings, is at the mercy of a restructuring by parent company Universal Scientific Industrial. As part of the cost-cutting measures that USI plans to undertake, Abit will cease production on all motherboards as the company heads into the new year.
Abit still plans to offer RMAs and warranties for up to three years, but you can expect to see no new Abit-branded motherboards coming through the retail chains until further notice... if ever.
Here's the wording straight from the mouth of Fernando Cobreros Benito, an Abit sales manage, in an interview with Hardware.Info:
"ABIT will definitely continue to [sic] manufactor products, these will not be motherboards and we have not got a 100% clear picture yet on what products will be made", stated Benito, and also added: "Products now made by USI that are not sold to OEM's will get the ABIT branding. Think about items like external hard drives to Car PC's. USI is already [sic] manufactering a wide range of products for all the big companies on the market."
Founded in 1989, Abit long enjoyed a status as one of the more popular motherboard vendors among consumers--arguably, providing some of the first enthusiast-branded motherboards a feverish upgrader could ever purchase. The company took a hit in late 2004 when its financial practices came under question, prompting the Taiwan Stock Exchange to downgrade Abit's stock. In many ways, one could argue that the stage was set for UBI to swoop in and purchase the company in May of 2006. Plenty of rumors surrounded the future of Abit's motherboard line after this acquisition went forward. Abit did its best to put out the fires well into the start of this year. A noble gesture, but one that's ultimately futile once the final hours of 2008 tick away. RIP, Abit's motherboard line.