The news is out: Intel (INTC) will aggressively strike the tablet market next year. For months, the tech giant granted its competitors, especially ARM (ARMH), the opportunity to take over the market of smartphones and tablets. However, Intel is planning on a more forceful tactic as it targets all tablet categories in 2014. This means that there will be Intel chips in generic as well as in top of the line tablets.
Not on Windows Phone
Intel did not mention Microsoft's (MSFT) Windows Phone as one of its targets during the recent analyst day. While every Windows Phone that came out was equipped with a processor from Qualcomm (QCOM), it is sort of troubling that Intel did not consider supporting the smartphone brand. Nevertheless, the company is determinedly chasing the biggest group of handsets, Google's (GOOG) Android. The operating system manages to secure the top spot, putting Apple's (AAPL) iOS at second place.
Even though Windows Phone did see an increase in the market share this year it still fails to knock down iOS, Android, and even BlackBerry thus making it the fourth most used phone in the United States. Perhaps Intel did make the right decision especially since Android sold huge volumes of units, making it dominate the smartphone market with 81% market share.
More Tablets to Come
In the Philippines, Intel's country manager Calum Chisholm stated that the company will focus chiefly on 2-in-1 devices and tablets next year. With consumers using more than one device these days, the 2-in-1 technologies have the potential in boosting Intel's revenue in the mentioned country as well as in many parts of the globe. Adding to the statement, Chisholm said that more affordable gadgets will be introduced next year, targeting 70% of market share for inexpensive tablets under $199.
It looks like the roadmap for Intel's processor has been developed. With the 32-bit Bay Trail-T launched and comes with Windows 8/8.1 support, there is nothing that can stop Intel from trying to rule the tech market. Although of course there is a very long way to go, Intel is already prepared to go through it all. In fact, Intel will most likely be in Android tablets by the end of 2013 in Taiwan.
Intel is getting ready to release 64-bit Bay Trail tablets or the Z3735D series, which will run on Android and will be as affordable as $99. This is definitely an aggressive move even though this is not the first time that Intel is releasing a tablet under $100. Other models, particularly those that measure 8 inches, will be released in early 2014 with prices starting at $149.
Cherry Trail, a chip based on the 14nm Airmont architecture from Intel, also supports the newest Windows OS and Android. The chip will be available next year around September. Together with Bay Trail, it is said that these two will infiltrate both 8-inch and 10-inch tablets next year. Aside from the two processors, another chip is underway known as the Willow Trail. It is based on Intel's 14nm Goldmont processor and will also be featured in a number of tablets in 2014.
Bay Trail and the other upcoming Intel products can attract a number of buyers. Although Intel has confirmed that it will focus more on tablets next year, there are stories circulating that Intel has plans on launching two more processors for smartphones in the first and third quarters next year.
As for investors who have been monitoring the INTC stock, Intel has sustained its rally and is almost at a multi-month high. What Intel needs now is mobile traction, which should happen as soon as possible. If not, the window of opportunity will only get smaller. However, with the upcoming product lineup as well as the next generation chip Broxton that will be launched in 2015, Intel is really a stock worth watching. In terms of performance, the company certainly delivers for its investors. And if the plans fall into place, Intel may finally be able to break into the market and may provide investors with long position with handsome rewards.