Intel have been spending a huge amount of money lately … $7.7 billion dollars on security company McAfee and recently $1.4 billion on Infineon. It is clear they are focusing on the mobile marketplace with these purchases, especially when the MeeGo mobile operating system partnership with Nokia is taken into consideration.
Analysts however are hot in debate over these moves and whether or not they are actually enough for Intel to make an impact in the mobile market. Let us not forget Intel's purchase of Wind River Systems for $884 million in 2009 – a maker of mobile software.
Jack Gold of J.Gold Associates said “Becoming more vertical [in mobile] for Intel is about survival, Intel knows it has to change with the times. The Internet of connected things means it's not just about the processor anymore. It's about connectivity — hence the wireless acquisitions — and it's about security to keep us safer when we are connected.”
Ken Dulaney, a Gartner analyst, said Intel is “not yet a force in mobile, and historically they have been unsuccessful.” So not that positive a vote from some of the industries leading analysts, but that won't be enough to put Intel off. Dulaney also said “Intel has “never mastered” that energy-efficient architecture, but he did acknowledge that Intel's next version of the Atom processor, called Medfield , “may be on the verge of improving power management.”
Infineon certainly gives Intel a good starting point into the mobile sector but they are going to have to push their Atom processors into mass adoption in this traditionally difficult marketplace.
Many analysts say that Intel ditched their StrongARM business too soon (in a buyover by Marvell Technology Group for $600 million), meaning that they have to rebuild from stratch and focus on how to make the business profitable. Let us not forget that they also need to find a hardware partner to build smartphones with their chips.
KitGuru says: Tough times ahead for Intel, especially as people expect them to do well immediately after forking out so much cash.