Intel's Global Strategy overview
7/31/2009 by: John Oram
Executives at Intel's Mid-Summer Technology Summit in San Francisco on Wednesday discussed the company's future markets. Sean Maloney, executive VP and chief sales and marketing officer, said that over the next year, all of Intel's product line will be replaced with lots of new stuff.
Maloney and other executives stressed the company's plans to migrate to 32nm products. Maloney said the company sees a huge amount of pent-up demand among businesses for replacement PCs in Europe and US.
Intel intents to base their sales push on second generation 32nm high-k, metal gate CPUs and SOCs (system on chip). Intel's first 32nm chips, code named Clarkdale and Arrandale, will be for mainstream desktop and laptop computers. In early 2010, Intel is scheduled to ship 32nm chips for high-end desktops and servers.
Intel's Sean Maloney discuss the separation in mobile computing space
Maloney briefly spoke about the history of Intel's Atom processor and the netbook. Intel sees the mobile computing market trifurcating, going three ways. At entry level pricing there will be netbooks with 10" displays, next will be ultra-thin, light weight dual-core with more performance and 13" display size, at the top end will be high performance full sized notebooks with quad-core, lots of memory, large disks, and big displays.
Maloney said that the golden age of mobile voice is over, and the world is moving into mobile data. As one of the leading advocates for WiMAX - Maloney is a member of the board of Clearwire Corporation that is installing a nationwide WiMAX system – he spoke about the steady worldwide progress WiMAX is making. However, Italy has an installed 3.5G mobile network that has faster data through-put than WiMAX. In a way, Intel has only themselves to blame - if WiMAX was added into Centrino platform, repeat of Wi-Fi wildfire in 2003 and 2004 was practically guaranteed.
Intel often points to India as a perfect place to implement WiMAX. The need is high, the potential customer base in business and government is willing to spend on higher -end mobile data equipment, but WiMAX's overall success rate has been low. This is due in part because India has a convoluted regulatory system which lack consensus on spectrum allocation, tower placement, and licensing out-of-country carriers. There are many Indian critics who say they are left in a no-man’s land, where the potential and promise of WiMAX for India has yet to be fulfilled.
China's impressive ultra-fast railways plan and the associated data infrastructure for constant online access
Maloney stressed that Intel is a global company and that 80% of its business is outside of the US. They tend to keep cash reserves on hand so they can jump in when an opportunity shows itself. They did that with their recent $7 billion commitment to 32nm manufacturing expansion in the US. Maloney briefly spoke about the new relationship with TSMC on SOC development. He then talked about their new agreement with China Railways. The Chinese Ministry of Railways has partnered with Intel to develop the data network for controlling a new 350 kph [217MPH] railway with over 40,000 km [24,854 miles] of high-speed track. The project will launch in 2012 with a completion date projected for 2020.
Closing that segment of the day, Maloney and Paul Bergevin, VP of the sales and marketing group, and the general manager for the global communications group, answered questions from the audience. Maloney was asked about Windows 7 and he acknowledged that Windows is the dominate operating system. Maloney said their research shows that three year old computers may run Windows 7. But, four to five year old computers probably will not [our preliminary tests show that 6 year old laptop with 1st gen Centrino runs Windows 7 with no problems, Ed.]. Therefore, anything older than a five year old motherboard/BIOS should clearly not run Windows 7. Forrester Research estimates that 86% of the corporate desktops still use Windows XP with three to four year old computers.
Maloney said one difficulty for implementing upgrades will be that the skill set of IT departments in corporations and the government are often based on fifteen year old experiences. Thus, they have an old view about the replacement cycle. Plus, they often do not understand green computing with the advanced power management and energy saving features implemented in the latest Intel product lines.
Maloney said that Intel's new multi-core CPUs have what Intel marketing calls their Turbo-Boost. This allows the multi-core processor to adjust power based on the load requirement of the application running. It is a further advancement of the CPU "sleeping" between cycles first seen in the Intel Centrino platform. In fact, the first CPU sleep mode was developed for the Intel 80C88 in 1987 and patented by Stavro Prodromou, CEO & Founder at Poqet Computer Corporation, which was purchased by Fujitsu of Japan for those patents. Not everything is really new under the Sun.
Other executives spoke about Intel's manufacturing process, the expanding embedded processor marketplace, Intel’s approach to innovation in healthcare, Intel's Investment Capital in cleantech, and the day finished with Mooly Eden's prediction on the future of mobile computing.
Update July 31, 2009 18:36 GMT - Following the publication of this story, we got contacted by Mr. Nick Knupffer, long standing member of Intel's PR department with a following statement:
"Turbo is a new technology. There are no other chips out therethat dynamically scale the clockspeeds of individual cores beyond theirallocated clockspeed when the thermal conditions allow it, and do this while completelyshutting off other cores using power gates."
The conclusion is up to you...
Intel, Technology Summit, San Francisco, 32nm, High-k, metal gate ,CPU, SOC, Atom, Clarkdale, Arrandale, netbook, ultra-thin, notebooks, dual-core, quad-core, 80C88, Turbo-boost, Centrino, Clearwire, WiMAX, G3.5, Italy, India, China, Chinese Railway, Ministry of Transportation, Forrester Research, Poqet, Fujitsu, healthcare, cleantech, Investment Capital, Sean Maloney, Paul Bergevin, Stavro Prodromou, Mooly Eden
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