IT giant, Intel Corporation, is undergoing a massive shift in strategy. While jobs fall by the wayside, Intel has its eye firmly on what analysts are calling ‘new frontiers in technology’, and there are signs that the other tech behemoths are set to follow suit.
Last week, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich outlined his strategy for the chip giant in the years ahead, as it struggles to move away from its dependence on the waning PC market.
The thrust of the new strategy is: ‘transforming Intel from a PC company to a company that powers the cloud and billions of smart, connected computing devices’ and this, says Krzanich, encompasses five core beliefs:
• The cloud is the most important trend shaping the future of the smart, connected world – and thus Intel’s future.
• The many “things” that make up the PC Client business and the internet of things are made much more valuable by their connection to the cloud.
• Memory and programmable solutions such as FPGAs will deliver entirely new classes of products for the data centre and the internet of things.
• 5G will become the key technology for access to the cloud as we move toward an always-connected world.
• Moore’s Law will continue to progress and Intel will continue to lead in delivering its true economic impact.
For Intel, these core beliefs form a clear virtuous cycle – the cloud and data center, the internet of things, memory s are all bound together by connectivity and enhanced by the economics of Moore’s Law. (Gordon Moore was an Intel co-founder so Moore’s Law is ingrained in the company’s psyche.)
Key to this is the “internet of things,” every device, sensor and console that has potential to connect to the cloud. This means that everything that a “thing” does can be captured as a piece of data, measured in real-time, and becomes accessible from anywhere.
Krzanich believes that: “the biggest opportunity in the internet of things is that it encompasses just about everything in our lives today – it’s ubiquitous. For most areas of industry and retail – from our shoes and clothes to our homes and cars – the internet of things is transforming everything and every experience. At Intel, we will focus on autonomous vehicles, industrial and retail as our primary growth drivers of the internet of things.”
In a time when technology is valued not just for the devices it produces, but for the experiences it makes possible, Intel is banking on the fact that a broader focus, and sharper execution will enable the company to take a lead in a smart, connected world.
Several major corporations have already taken the initiative to push frontier technology, such as Google with its Google Cardboard and Apple’s eventual (maybe?) 3D printer. Layoffs are the inevitable result and, in many cases, are already happening, as more and more companies find themselves having to look in new directions.
With Apple’s iPhone production on the decline comes more evidence that companies’ defining products won’t be what sustains them into the future and that Intel and Krzanich’s new focus on experiences rather than the devices that make these possible is the way to go.
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