Intel forms 'Internet of Things' division

Intel forms 'Internet of Things' division

Summary: Intel, eager to not be left behind like it was with smartphones and tablets, is forming an 'Internet of Things' division in an attempt to position itself to be able to capitalize from connected devices.

TOPICS: Hardware, Intel

Chip giant Intel is setting its sights on the connected devices market as a future revenue source.

Connected devices are predicted by many to be the next big thing in technology. The idea is that everyday devices such as lightbulbs, thermostats, bathroom scales and even appliances such as refrigerators will all be connected to create an 'Internet of Things,' a technology which leverages wireless connectivity and cloud computing.

And Intel wants to make sure that it's there.

Intel's new 'Internet of Things Solutions Group' will be headed by Doug Davis, general manager, and will report directly to the company's chief executive, Brian Krzanich.

"Krzanich is saying, 'I want a higher level of focus on this to help us grow it and put the level of attention on it that it deserves,'" Davis told Reuters.

Intel is a company that dominated the desktop, notebook, and server processor markets for decades, but was slow to position itself for the shift from the PC to the post-PC era, allowing companies such as Qualcomm and Nvidia to not only gain a foothold but also establish dominance inside smartphones and tablets.

It's clear that Intel doesn't want to be left behind if the 'Internet of Things' takes off.

Intel has also been working on a range of low-power chips for wearable devices, and even ingestible biomedical. At the core of this are Intel's Quark SoC X1000 and E3800 Atom silicon.

The new group will combine Intel's existing business which is focused on chips for commercial and industrial devices with Intel's Wind River subsidiary, which sells software for commercial and industrial devices.

"We're pulling together a couple of pieces that are already doing well and we want to accelerate those efforts. This creates a primary focus around 'Internet of Things,'" Davis said.

Topics: Hardware, Intel

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  • Intel's (and others) problem.

    I look at some of the tech companies like Intel (and MS until recently) is they develop great tech and then wait for someone, mostly OEM's to actually use it. Of course the problem with that is new tech. is likely more expensive and the OEM's operate on razor thin margins and aren't in a hurry be the first one out the door with an unknown tech. or if the market will even like it.

    "The idea is that everyday devices such as lightbulbs, thermostats, bathroom scales and even appliances such as refrigerators will all be connected to create an 'Internet of Things."

    All well and good, "IF" there is a market for it and I strongly question if there is. Who wants some hacker turning the thermostat down to 30 degrees in the winter? (Yes, we al know someone will hack it at some point.) My point is that few OEMs are going to jump on the band wagon right away, if ever.

    The flip side of that is Intel can't afford to not be in the market (even if it's not real yet) if it turns out to be the "next big tech." so they go in the water up to their knees but no deeper and we get a half hearted effort that does little more than suck dollars from stockholders.

    Off the top of my head, I'd give this effort a "D" on the report card.
  • Intel has always been known to bet on the future...

    ...and that's one of the reasons for their dominating market position. They can certainly afford to take these "venture capitalist" kind of risks - the potential ROI is massive, and the cost of not being a player in the early market is just too high.

    NoAx, I partially agree with you that the consumer side of things is a bit uncertain, but my bet is that the indistrial applications (automation) will not only be much bigger and more lucrative, but also will hit the market much sooner. So overall, I'd give Intel an A- on the report card!
    • Intel is not alone in this thinking

      Cisco thinks almost the same way about IoT. Check out this other ZDNet article:

      It's all about gaining control by being the early mover!