Intel’s Real Failure
Intel’s problem isn’t its failure to get into mobile but its failure to crank up its PC microprocessors, argues Linley Gwennap in Microprocessor Report.
Gwennap points out that 2012 is the third of four years in which PC growth has been under 4%.
He also points out that: “Intel’s fastest Core i7 desktop processor went from a 2.93GHz quad core in 2009 to 3.5GHz quad core in 2012.”
“Note that the company went from 45nm to 32nm to 22nm in this time period,” adds Gwennap.
“Performance is increasing at just 10% a year for desktops and 16% for laptops,” says Gwennap, “a far cry from the good old days of 60% annual performance increases.”
As a result, says Gwennap, PC users have little incentive to upgrade.
As for Intel’s mobile aspirations, Gwennap points out that they are a bit silly.
“The mobile processor market is too small to matter,” says Gwennap, “PC processors will generate $31bn in 2012 but mobile application processors will total $6.2bn. Worse yet, excluding in-house processors that Apple and Samsung design for themselves, the merchant opportunity for Intel in mobile processors is only $1.5bn. If Intel gained 100% of that market, it would make up for only a 5% drop in PC processor sales.”