Intel's CEO is putting the world's largest chipmaker on a fast track to change. That become clear Thursday at the company's investor meeting, happening in the shadow of a declining PC market.
Intel will open its factories to "any company" that wants to tap its leading-edge manufacturing capabilities, CEO Brian Krzanich said today.
To date, Intel has taken a very cautious, small-scale approach to making chips on a contract-manufacturing basis.
Separately, in one of the biggest revelations, Intel will develop a phone chip called "SoFIA" that will be built at a factory outside the company for 2014. If investors are looking for a sign of changes at Intel, this is probably the biggest.
That chip will have integrated global 3G and HSPA+ and the communications component will be based on an ARM design.
"SoFIA...is pragmatic targeting the entry-level market," said RBC Capital Markets analyst Doug Freedman in a research note.
And Intel is pursuing the tablet market with a vengeance. The company is aiming to quadruple tablets shipped with its chips to 40 million tablets in 2014.
Another sign is Intel's newfound focus on modem chips. For example, a future multimode modem will integrate the latest broadband tech, including TD-LTE and TD-SCDMA.
"The company is shipping its 7160 LTE product (7260 LTE-A to be out next year) as they believe products are world-class. Focus on smartphones is now focused on big players developing targeted solutions," wrote Freedman.