Wow, is there a doubt in anyone's mind as to what IME is for? Let's see:

- IME has been installed on all Intel chipsets since 2008;
- user has no control over it;
- it's a standalone Minix-based system that can take control of the system at the lowest level;
- it cannot be turned off by user;
- tech specs are not publicly available.

Also have a look here: "[IME] is a parallel operating system running on an isolated chip, but with access to your PCís hardware. It runs when your computer is asleep, while itís booting up, and while your operating system is running. It has full access to your system hardware, including your system memory, the contents of your display, keyboard input, and even the network... Itís a little black box, and only Intel knows exactly whatís inside."

Well, if it's not a backdoor then I would say that it's a kill-switch for users who... don't behave.