Intel Sheds PC Company Definition

/ 3 years ago

Intel Cycle of Growth

With the decline in the PC market over the last couple of years, it’s no surprise that some companies have decided to bail out. Even for those staying the market, the choices are to either double down and secure more of the declining market or diversify away to reduce risk. The biggest surprise though is coming from Intel, the stalwart champion of the PC, who it appears is trying to rebrand itself as not just a PC firm.

We first saw hints of this when Intel released their Q1 results earlier. Chipzilla noted that they wanted to transition away from being a “PC company to one that powers the cloud and billions of smart, connected computing devices”. Now, we can bring you the rest of the statement.

“We will intensify our investments to fuel the virtuous cycle of growth in the data center, IoT, memory and FPGA businesses, and to drive more profitable mobile and PC businesses. Intel delivers a broad range of computing and connectivity technologies that are foundational to this strategy and that position us well to lead the end-to-end transition to 5G. Our connectivity strategy includes increased investment in wired and wireless communications technology for connecting all things, devices and people to the cloud, and to power the communications infrastructure behind it. We re-evaluated projects to better align to this strategy.”

The new plan is set to refocus the company away from pure PC products and into other growth markets. There are 5 main areas being targetted, being the cloud, connected “things” (including PCs), memory business (3D XPoint and NAND), connectivity (5G and modems) and their fab business. Honestly, it seems like Intel just wants to refocus on the higher margin businesses rather than a complete turn away from PC. Ironically, despite connected things being a focus, mobile SoCs are being cut. Goldmont, the successor to the current line of mobile and tablet SoCs is being cut.

After decades of poor Atom performance, Intel finally upped their game with Silvermont and the Airmont SoCs which were finally competitive. Those drove Windows tablets and low-end netbooks forwards. By getting out of the mobile and tablet SoC market and canceling Goldmont, it leaves the Windows tablet market hanging. If Intel proceeds with this, we may see AMD snap up this market with their Jaguar and Puma based cores.

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