Intel and Microsoft hold some striking similarities. Both behemoths dominate their respective areas of desktop computing. Both have been accused of unsavory, monopolistic behavior. And both are now struggling to gain relevance in the brave new mobile world.
So just as we've heard Steve Ballmer declare mobile (especially beating the iPad) to be a high priority for Microsoft, we'll no doubt hear the same sentiment expressed early and often by Intel execs at this week's IDF (Intel Developer Forum).
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Intel, which hasn't had much luck getting mobile device makers to adopt its Atom chip, has watched ARM Technologies and Qualcomm win again and again on smartphones and other emerging mobile devices.
Just last week, in fact, and perhaps casting a small shadow over IDF, ARM announced a new mobile processor core architecture, the "Eagle" Cortex-A15, which the company says will deliver five times the performance of high-end smartphone processors with comparable power consumption.
But Intel has an ace in the hole with the wireless technology it picked up with the acquisition of Infineon's wireless division. Intel says it will be able to integrate Infineon's 3G and 4G offerings into its own processors and system-on-chips, thus making it easier for devices to connect to the Internet.