Intel already announced plans to boost the size of its Leixlip facility, but has now looks like it wants to expand its Irish operations even more.
Analysts at Gartner group said a shortage of CPUs stopped the PC market’s revival in its tracks.
The idea is to extend opportunities to value-added distributors (VAD) and global systems integrators (GSI) along with additional opportunities for resellers. The new updates provide benefits to partners across the industry.
The pair’s Digital Transformation Index shows that that UK firms are aware that things are changing and meeting customer demands is going to become more challenging. Nearly a fifth of them were scared that their organisations will be left behind.
Analysts have said that the PC market is about to pick up and there are fears that Intel might not have enough chips on hand. Already Eastern suppliers are saying that there are shortages of Intel chips and HPE has started buying AMD gear.
However Swan sang that there would be enough to go around: “We’re prioritising the production of Intel Xeon and Intel Core processors so that collectively we can serve the high-performance segments of the market. That said, supply is undoubtedly tight, particularly at the entry-level of the PC market.”
Global PC shipments grew by 1.4 percent year on year in the three months ending June 2018, marking the market’s strongest performance since early 2012.
Demand for Intel’s CPUs has also seen higher than expected demand due to a strong enterprise server upgrade cycle, the firm claims.
However, the California-based vendor’s ongoing scramble to churn out chips is likely to push PC makers and OEMs into the arms of Intel’s main rival, AMD.
AMD’s share price has more than doubled since the middle of last year, but declined around six percent after Swan’s letter was published.
Research company Fubon claims that AMD has already stepped into the breach with deals with Dell and HP, CNBC reported.
In response, Intel has pledged to plough an additional €861.5 million into its 4nm manufacturing across sites in Oregon, Arizona, Ireland and Israel.
“We’re working with your teams to align demand with available supply. You can expect us to stay close, listen, partner and keep you informed,” Swan said.
The IMS Evolve Cold Chain solution has been released putting Intel’s IoT into the paws of UK supermarkets.
For those who came in late, IMS Evolve enables food retailers to leverage actionable data and insights from existing infrastructure and systems and has been benchmarked as a leading provider of machine integration and event management. This offers a service delivery mechanism that features configurable business process rules and logic, which enables automation and workflow improvements resulting in substantial efficiencies, cost savings, availability and quality of performance.
It uses Intel processors and Dell Edge Gateways to deliver clarity and consistency through a single consolidated integration layer and provides a practical approach to waste reduction and to ensure improved quality.
The outfit claims that with the IMS Evolve IoT solution integrated within the cold chain, not only can energy consumption be reduced, but a higher quality product can be achieved, improving the customer experience and enabling retailers to enhance their brand, realise value quickly, and save money.
One British supermarket has seen a nearly 50 percent reduction in stock loss, and 40 percent reduction in reactive maintenance calls driven by condition-based maintenance, resulting in 15-20 percent overall cost savings. The IMS Evolve solution has also enabled customers to achieve 99.98 percent availability of critical assets and a 30 per cent reduction in customer complaints, it’s claimed.
Jason Kay, CCO said: “IMS Evolve has greatly benefited from being a part of the Intel IoT Market Ready Solution Program. From accelerating the design and deployment of intelligent devices and analytics with our customers to supporting the continuous innovation, evolution and delivery of our solution.”
An investigation by Intel found that Krzanichhad a “consensual past relationship” with an Intel employee, violating a non-fraternisation policy which applies to all managers at Intel.
Intel’s chief financial officer Robert Swan has been appointed interim CEO with immediate effect.
In a statement Intel chairman Andy Bryant said: “The board believes strongly in Intel’s strategy and we are confident in Bob Swan’s ability to lead the company as we conduct a robust search for our next CEO.
“Bob has been instrumental to the development and execution of Intel’s strategy, and we know the company will continue to smoothly execute.
“We appreciate Brian’s many contributions to Intel.”
Intel added that it has “robust succession” plans in place and has started the search for a new permanent CEO, with the help of a recruitment firm.
Interim CEO Swan added: “Intel’s transformation to a data-centric company is well under way and our team is producing great products, excellent growth and outstanding financial results.
“I look forward to Intel continuing to win in the marketplace.”
But did Krzanich quit or was there a swift execution>
Chipzilla is gearing up for its 50th birthday next month, and Intel’s general manager of the Client Computing Group Gregory Bryant said now is not the time to write off Intel’s number one legacy – the PC.
Bryant told the assorted throngs at Computex in Taipei the PC remains a critical facet of Intel’s business, and it’s an area where there are still many opportunities ahead.
“Most of us are already choosing the PC as the place to go to focus. In fact, when people need to get things done, over 80 percent turn to their PC. At the same time, we are more distracted than ever. Data shows that on average people are interrupted every three minutes. The nature of where, how and why we work is also changing. And the way people connect with one another has changed, with technology being a key driving force”, he said.
Bryant said that there is an opportunity to fundamentally improve the PC experience to meet today’s needs and help people focus on what is most important to them. To help them create and build a sense of community.
“But to make this leap, we need to innovate the PC around five key vectors: performance, connectivity, battery life, adaptability and intelligence”, he said.
“Our unwavering commitment to delivering the best performance continued as we announced the latest additions to our mobile lineup of the 8th Gen Intel Core processor family: the Whiskey Lake U-series and Amber Lake Y-series, featuring up to double-digit performance gains3 and integrated gigabit Wi-Fi. Expect more than 140 new laptops and 2 in 1s from OEMs starting this fall. And for desktop, by the end of this year, we’re delivering a new X-series release and the next Intel Core S-series processor.”
Beyond processing power, Bryant thought there was room for even more PC acceleration with the introduction of the Intel Optane SSD 905P, now available in an M.2 form factor.
“Delivering industry-leading endurance4, this new, slim Intel Optane SSD is a high-performance drive that allows the processor to spend less time waiting and more time computing, enabling users to enjoy an amazing computing experience”, he added.
US channel GM Jason Kimrey told the assorted throngs at Cisco’s Partner Connection Week, that Intel was reducing its reliance on its traditional PC business after 50 years.
He said the transformation was unlike anything that Intel had ever done before
“In 2010/2011 we were really a PC-centric company, which is why people know about Intel, but we recognised back then that we had to transform – transform or die – because the world simply isn’t going to be relying on the PC platform for the future.”
He said that while the PC was still a critical part of its business Intel had begun a digital transformation from a PC company to a data company.
Chipzilla has invested in new technologies and will make a return to the memory scene in 2010 – which was one of its original focuses as an organisation.
He did say that these new areas might not necessarily contribute to revenue growth straight away and Intel could not just rely on our processing roadmap to meet those demands.
“We have to make investments in areas that we just haven’t before: memory, accelerator technology network, fabric, 5G connectivity – all critical investments that we’re making and have made. We’ve been investing in these new and emerging areas and even though they’re not going to make big revenue for us immediately, we know this is where the market is going and where the margin is; we have to have a play”, he said.
Wind River said the transaction would result in it becoming independent. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed, and the deal is expected to close in the second quarter.
It is a little odd for Intel to dump Wind River which has been a player in the industrial IoT market and a strategic priority for Chipzilla.
However, Tom Lantzsch, senior vice president and general manager of Intel’s IoT group, said the sale of Wind River is “designed to sharpen our focus on growth opportunities that align to Intel’s data-centric strategy”. Words, words, words.
“Wind River will remain an important ecosystem partner, and we will continue to collaborate on critical software-defined infrastructure opportunities to advance an autonomous future. We expect this transition will be seamless for our mutual customers and partners.”
An Intel spokeswoman claimed the sale of Wind River doesn’t run counter to the company’s strategic focus on IoT, adding that the company “will continue to be an important industry partner”.
Wind River is part of Intel’s Internet of Things Group, whose annual revenue grew 20 percent to $3.2 billion last year, but the subsidiary has been a small percentage of that business group, according to a source close to Intel. The company declined to break out Wind River’s sales but said it is profitable.
Chipzilla acquired Wind River in 2009 as part of its effort to grow beyond the PC and server markets. The business, which had been operating somewhat like an independent subsidiary, was then fully integrated within Intel in 2017 as part of an effort to better align Wind River with other Intel groups.
Chipzilla said that the new brand is an Intel Core platform extension that will promote the bundling of the i5, i7 and i9 processors with the performance-boosting Optane memory module that Intel announced a little over a year ago. These processors that come with Optane memory bundled are receiving a modified naming convention: i5+, i7+ and i9+.
Optane memory was previously only compatible with Kaby Lake.
The company showed off the first eighth-generation Core i5, i7 and i9 processors for laptops and a new set of 300-series motherboards. In addition, the company announced Coffee Lake processors for Intel’s vPro platform that provides PC remote management and other features for enterprises.
Intel has been pitching the new Core i+ products as a complete new brand which will be promoted as a retail box that comes with the processor and Optane memory that bears the Core i+ brand. Intel will also promote the brand by offering Core i+ badges to system builders and other solution providers who are selling systems that come with either an i5, i7 or i9 CPU and Optane memory.
The brand could ultimately help partners, because it will force customers to badger the channel with questions about how it will help them. Intel appears to be putting a lot of emphasis into trying to drive the replacement cycle and Optane is a way to do that.
Chipzilla appears to be chucking a lot of cash into the Core i+ brand.
Optane memory is based on the 3D XPoint nonvolatile memory technology developed by Intel and partner Micron Technology that can speed up the performance of hard drive disks. With a 32 GB Optane memory module running on the Core i7, Intel promises speeds of up to three times faster for opening large media files, up to 3.9 times faster for loading video games and up to 2.1 times faster for everyday tasks.
In a recent interview CNBC’s “Mad Money” host Jim Cramer conducted with Krzanich on March 15 he said that despite the company’s issues with Meltdown and Spectre, Intel has fared relatively well on Wall Street, with the company’s stock price up roughly 13 percent since the beginning of this year.
“As we move to a much broader data-centric strategy, I think Wall Street’s just now starting to believe and understand just what that means — and you see it in our stock price, right? You see people believing in that.”
Krzanich downplayed a report that Intel was preparing a bid to acquire Broadcom before the competitor’s plan to buy Qualcomm was squashed by the Trump Administration.
“I can’t speak about rumors, but I can tell you we made two big acquisitions, biggest acquisitions in Intel’s history with Altera and Mobileye”, Krzanich told Cramer. “We’re heads down on making those successful, and they’re our growth engines for the future.”
The paper also speculated that Intel’s acquisition plans around Broadcom could be motivated by its fears of the major market player a Broadcom-Qualcomm merger would create.
The combined player would create a powerhouse in smartphones and datacentres – areas Intel has ear-marked for future growth.
Qualcomm’s purchase of Dutch automotive chip specialist NXP Semiconductors NV would strengthen its presence in the automotive market, which is an area where Intel wants to be.
Former Apple head and blogger Jean-Louis Gassée thinks that Intel has realised that it needs a seat at the smartphone table.
“Despite troubles with its more advanced manufacturing processes, the company managed to supply some wireless modems for the iPhone 7, 8 and X. Ironically, the alliance was aided by a long-standing and bitter intellectual property dispute between Apple and Qualcomm. If Broadcom’s acquisition of Qualcomm proceeds, the dispute with Apple could disappear”, said Gassée.
“If the dispute is settled, Intel loses its wireless modems deal with Apple. No mobile CPUs plus no modems equal nothing of substance. Broadcom would be in charge – it would hold all the cards. Is it any wonder that Intel wants to find ways to scupper the deal?” Gassée added.
The patch causes systems to reboot more often than normal, particularly if you are running older Broadwell and Haswell CPUs.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the firm is advising some of its customers to hold off installing patches for the processor security flaw, which was revealed at the beginning of the month.
General manager of Intel’s data centre group Navin Shenoy said in a statement: “We are working quickly with these customers to understand, diagnose and address this reboot issue. If this requires a revised firmware update from Intel, we will distribute that update through the normal channels. We are also working directly with datacentre customers to discuss the issue. End users should continue to apply updates recommended by their system and operating system providers.”
For those who came in late, Intel’s processors contain security flaws, later named Meltdown and Spectre.
Even if you don’t experience crashes, the security fixes are likely to cause significant slowdowns and a decrease in system performance, according to Microsoft.
Global channel VP Richard Steranka has warned that McAfee’s top-tier partners will have to meet service-certification requirements by the end of the year or be demoted.
Speaking at McAfee’s MPower Cybersecurity Summit in Amsterdam, Steranka said that McAfee is implementing the new training criteria to reward partners that have invested in the firm.
The big idea is to reward VARs who are building their business around McAfee’s software, rather than solely rewarding transactional partners who hold “more than 300” security vendors in their portfolio.
“At the beginning of 2017, it was a new requirement of being a Platinum partner to have two service delivery specialists in at least three of our product areas: end-point, infrastructure, data, or security operations. There was no incentive [previously], so we created one.”
Partners have until 31 December to obtain the necessary certifications, when their place in McAfee’s partner programme will be evaluated.
The vendor has 250 Platinum partners globally, and Steranka expects this to decrease as some current Platinum partners cannot meet the new criteria.
New certifications have been added to the programme; partners are still given rebates depending on how they perform against set quarterly revenue targets.
Partners hitting 80 to 100 percent of their sales target get a two percent rebate, those achieving 100 percent to 150 percent make four percent, while those exceeding 150 percent of sales can earn an eight percent quarterly rebate.