Maybe a new day has dawned at Intel (INTC). The chip maker's new chief executive, Brian Krzanich, after but a few weeks on the job, already has rattled some cages with a broad reorganization that firmly points the venerable company not only at the smartphone and tablet market but also at newly emerging mobile technology.
Will Intel’s internal shuffle bust open the mobile chip market, or will it be too little, too late? Will a mobile-generated reorg help it to snip away at big dog Qualcomm’s (QCOM) leadership? Will Intel work so hard at catching up on smartphones and tablets that it misses the next wave of mobile technology? Read on for the details …
According to reports, Krzanich has created a new unit dedicated to mobile technology, headed by Mike Bell, a former Palm mobile device hotshot. In addition, Intel’s PC client, mobile communications and data center groups will report to Krzanich, while Renee James, new Intel president, will handle the vendor’s worldwide manufacturing operation. James, who also will lead corporate strategy and planning, ceded her role as Intel’s software chief to Doug Fisher, a senior software group executive.
Hermann Eul, who with Bell previously co-led Intel’s smartphone chip making group, known as Mobile Communications, will now take over responsibility for that business.
Krzanich issued a memo to company employees on Monday detailing the organizational shuffle, the content of which Intel subsequently confirmed. He is said to have stressed execution and told employees that he is intent on not letting new opportunities pass by.
“I am committed to being bolder, moving faster, and accepting that this means changes will be made knowing that we will listen, learn and then make adjustments in order to keep pace with a rapidly changing industry," he reportedly wrote. "Our business faces significant challenges, and we simply must continue to execute while finalizing our future strategy.”
Dadi Perlmutter, Intel Architecture unit head, who previously controlled the chip maker’s main product groups, is, for the moment at least, left in limbo, but reportedly Krzanich has pledged to find a new role for him.
Bell’s “new devices” group reportedly will be pointed at emerging products, meaning Intel is looking well beyond current form factors and features to what’s on the horizon.
"The new devices organization is responsible for rapidly turning brilliant technical and business model innovations into products that shape and lead markets," Krzanich said in the memo, according to reports.
Even prior to ascending to Intel’s helm, Krzanich was on record vowing that Intel will leverage its manufacturing heft and expertise to dig a deeper bunker in the mobile device market, particularly for smartphones and tablets, and perhaps smart watches, if and when, they emerge. Moreover, he is said to have sold Intel's Board of Directors on a plan to muscle in on Qualcomm's market dominance for mobile-device chips.