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It's not often that TMF produces a real article any more, most are just ads for their newsletters and services. Today I had the pleasure of reading a real article which happens to be highly relevant to Intel.

Some people believe that Intel will eat ARM's lunch in mobile while others believe the opposite (I'm in the second group). Intel makes what is in essence a standard product in their foundry. ARM allows mobile makers to custom design their chips based on one of several ARM architectures. When using a standard chip you end up with a standard product, not one that differentiates itself significantly from the pack. According to the article "ARM states that there are over 80 licensees for the Cortex family." That's at least 80 firms that are not going to become Intel customers, maybe more.

Of course, taking my word for it is a bit of a stretch but if a well known chipmaker decides to exit the field, I think you might take notice. Texas Instruments (TXN) makes the ARM based OMAP 5 mobile processor line and they are exiting the business. They can't compete with "standard" ARM based chips against custom designed ARM based chips. The difficulty for Intel would be even greater unless they had a vastly superior product, which they don't for the mobile market.

Texas Instruments and the Big Chip Maker Anachronism
By Mark Hibben - November 16, 2012 | Tickers: AAPL, ARMH, INTC, TXN | 0 Comments

OMAP 5 Fails in the Mobile Market Place

On Nov. 14, Texas Instruments (NASDAQ:TXN) announced that it was pulling out of the mobile device (phones and tablets) systems-on-chip (SoC) market and cutting 1700 jobs. TI’s principal mobile device products, the OMAP line of SoCs will be redirected to embedded applications such as automotive and robotics. TI management believe they can compete effectively in these areas due to longer product life cycles and lower required investment. Texas Instruments also cited the fact that large customers “are increasingly developing their own custom chips.”

Denny Schlesinger
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