Amir Faintuch is a senior executive at Qualcomm’s networking and connectivity businesses Atheros, which we were surprised to discover has nothing to do with one of the three musketeers.
It is unusual for Intel to look outside its own company for senior executives and the hiring is being seen as a portent that the company is serious to sort out its struggling mobile business.
Faintuch will be an Intel a senior vice president and co-general manager of the Platform Engineering Group.
Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy said Faintuch will be among Intel’s dozen or so most senior executives and will co-manage the Platform Engineering Group with Josh Walden, a manufacturing technology expert who previously led the group.
Mulloy said that Faintuch brings experience designing “system on chips,” or SoCs, which combine features like modems, Wi-Fi and memory. Chipzilla is still a little short on the expertise needed for designing SoCs.
“We want to accelerate our success rate with SoCs and get the designs aligned and the roadmaps aligned to do that. We’ve made good progress but there’s more to be done. Amir has extensive management experience and a strong resume,” he said.
Since taking over in 2013, CEO Brian Krzanich has made a number of sweeping changes designed to counteract a slump in PC sales, including opening Intel’s cutting-edge factories to other chipmakers willing to pay for access to them.
Still the traffic between Intel and Qualcomm has not been one way. In fact Qualcomm is seen as a nicer place to work. In 2012, senior executive Anand Chandrasekher, a 25-year Intel veteran, jumped over to Qualcomm to become the outfit’s chief marketing officer.