Update: Intel records revenue and profit gains in Q4

'2010 was the best year in Intel's history. We believe that 2011 will be even better,' said Paul Otellini, Intel's CEO

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Smartphones with Atom chips will be released later this year, Otellini said.

Intel has almost no presence today in smartphones, which are ruled by ARM-based designs. To compete, Intel will use its advanced manufacturing technologies to reduce power consumption and improve the performance of its chips, Otellini said.

Intel currently makes its most advanced chips using the 32-nanometer process, and will switch to the 22-nm process technology by the end of this year.

ARM got a boost last week when Microsoft announced its next Windows OS will run on the ARM architecture, although Otellini said that what looks like a potential setback for Intel could actually benefit the company. Windows' availability on ARM will help Windows be more closely associated with mobile devices, which in turn could have knock-on benefits for Intel, he suggested.

Windows support could provide an opportunity for ARM to creep up into the PC market, although PCs have different power and performance requirements, Otellini noted. ARM CEO Warren East said last week his company is not targeting PCs because the shipping volumes are relatively small and ARM would rather focus on tablets and smartphones.

Tablets with Intel chips running Windows 7 will start shipping by the end of this quarter. Intel is also developing its own mobile OS for tablets called Meego, which will be seen in tablets later this year, Otellini said.

Intel will also try to renew excitement in the netbook segment by adding new features to its Atom chips and trying to lower prices of netbooks in emerging markets, Otellini said.

Atom is also having success in embedded devices, according to Otellini. "Many of the wins in this space are architecture conversions from Arm and MIPS" chips, Otellini said.


Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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