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Channel training integral to Intel smartphone/tablet growth

Nermin Bajric | May 20, 2013
Vendor admits it is behind in these product sectors and looks to increase activity

Intel worldwide reseller channel organisation general manager and sales and marketing group vice-president, Steve Dallman, speaking at Intel Solutions Summit 2013 in Macau.
Intel worldwide reseller channel organisation general manager and sales and marketing group vice-president, Steve Dallman, speaking at Intel Solutions Summit 2013 in Macau.

Intel worldwide reseller channel organisation general manager and sales and marketing group vice-president, Steve Dallman, has acknowledged the company is "behind and playing catch-up" in the tablet and smartphone space, and said it must crank up its activity across the product segment to become more competitive.

While Intel has a presence in these areas, its bread and butter, from a sales perspective, is PC chips where sales are falling, as Agam Shah reports.

While Dallman said "the plan is to continue to do what we have done but faster, better and cheaper than other companies," an integral component of Intel's growth strategy is catered towards channel training. The goal is to enable channel partners to capitalise on new tablet and smartphone opportunities, which, in turn, will grow Intel's competitiveness in the booming market.

The software-driven upgrade cycle
The upcoming launch of Haswell, Intel's fourth generation CPUs, will accelerate the upgrade cycle triggered by the introduction of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system. The software has caused a boom in touch-enabled devices which is bound to accelerate once Haswell hits shelves.

While similar upgrade cycles have taken place -such as Y2K, and more recently the move from Windows Vista to Windows 7  this one will be different, according to Dallman.

"You cannot take a six, or even two-year-old system and move it effectively to Windows 8," he said. "I think to really harness the productivity of Windows 8 you need to have touch."

He explained that while many businesses will probably stay in Windows 7, according to reports, the opportunity is definitely there, particularly in the consumer space. Another contributing factor is that Microsoft is ending its support for Windows XP in April 2014.

For Intel, the timing is perfect, and that is its compelling message that partners can present to potential customers, Dallman said.

"At a time where [customers] are entering one of these software-driven upgrade cycles, we are launching a new architecture, and this architecture utilises the benefits of Windows 8 and provides investment protection because [customers] will be able to run multiple operating systems on it."

Haswell will be available in four product SKUs: Y represents low power usage; the 15-Watt U model is set to be the mainstream item which Dallman believes the channel will use the most; the M and H variants are high-power CPUs catered for enthusiasts. All of these "have a stack of Pentiums and Celerons with them, meaning I can have my board and take my product lineup up and down the price points which reduces the cost to have multiple, industrial designs or chassis."

 

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