How much horsepower does it take to propel embedded chips into the market? We’ll soon see. Intel has commissioned a custom motorcycle from Orange County Choppers of American Chopper reality TV fame to commemorate the 30th anniversary of its entry into the embedded market, according to Internetnews (Link: here).
Embedded, which can be very loosely defined as any application that isn’t a PC or a server, is an important market for chipmakers such as Intel. Although it’s highly fragmented, the embedded space consumes millions of processors per year. Intel’s embedded customers generally use its chips in areas such as communications, storage and medical imaging systems. For its part, Intel’s OCC bike will have a built-in computer system that includes GPS navigation and a fingerprint scanner to ensure only authorized riders can start it. (Could this keep OCC’s Mikey from having a joyride on the new bike? Stay tuned for the next episode…)
Why should anyone care about Intel’s OCC bike? Here’s why: Motorcycles are appealing to a broad range of people. Those engineers who are responsible for selecting the processors their embedded devices are likely to have at least a healthy respect for the work it takes to build a custom bike. Intel may be hoping a little of that rubs off on its products. Having its name thrown throughout a couple of hours of television is an added bonus. This could be a sign that Intel is becoming a little more willing to try non-traditional types of marketing. We’ll see.