Intel’s Otellini shows optimism about the PC industry

The way Paul Otellini sees things, analysts have got it wrong: the PC industry is booming… just maybe not necessarily in mature markets like North America and Western Europe. At least, that seems to be the jist of what he told Forbes in a lengthy but interesting interview yesterday.

Otellini said he expects PC unit shipments will climb 13 to 15% this year thanks to two driving forces: corporations phasing out Winows XP and buying Windows 7-powered machines, and a strong uptick in emerging markets like China, Brazil, and India (which is purportedly seeing 8-9% GDP growth). He added this interesting tidbit:

The traditional analyst firms don’t see the emerging markets. A lot of that is below their radar. China is the second-largest market in the world for PCs and by 2012 will be number one. Brazil is the fourth-largest market. These guys don’t have a handle on that; they look at retail sales at Dixons and Best Buy and draw a conclusion.

Otellini threw in a "told you so," too. In late 2009, Intel predicted PC unit growth in the "high teens" for 2010. Analysts were purportedly expecting 5-6%, but according to Otellini, the real number turned out to be 17%.

The Intel CEO also talked tablets with Forbes, mentioning in passing that he owns both an iPhone and an iPad. While he expects Intel to make its mark in that arena, he doesn’t see tablets as a threat to the PC. "Tablets, like smartphones and netbooks, are additive to the overall computing spectrum," he noted. "When we introduced netbooks three years ago people were worried that it would cannibalize the notebook. But both grew nicely."

If you’re at a loss for something to do on your next coffee break, I recommend reading the full interview at Forbes. Otellini also discussed phones, Windows on ARM, the McAfee acquisition, and his succession at Intel. His perspective is an interesting one for sure.

Comments closed
    • ronch
    • 9 years ago

    What if…

    Paul worked for AMD?

    Would AMD’s board have fired him?

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 9 years ago

    Thing is, he’s not making a case for why Intel is going to be the company making those CPU’s for computers in those other-country markets. Why would an intel x86 CPU be needed if there are Denver/ARM CPU’s that are powerful, but also enable cheaper, smaller, cooler computers? Why would those markets even go with computers just because we did? Wouldn’t they see the pitfalls and easily dodge them by using the thing that the market seems to be picking over the computer, the smartphone/tablet? Not to say that those devices (without keyboards) will take over, but certainly in a large part, those markets could use tablets, add a bluetooth keyboard, and in a couple years you’ll have hardware even on the ARM side that the x86 won’t be able to make the, “It’s not fast enough” argument.

    Thing Intel doesn’t seem to get is… we’re getting to the point where we’re not arguing about who’s the fastest anymore. We’re actually getting into the, “Who’s using the least amount of power and providing a fast enough experience?” Do you think China wants to spend more money on supplying power to its huge population if it can reduce those costs by having computers based off of superior-power-sipping tech that can do more or less equivalent things? Of course not.

    Intel better figure out a way to beat ARM in power efficiency or they better get on board. Because right now, Atom’s looking like crap on the power use front. And that’ll become a bigger issue the more we move into the future. Not just for tablets, but for everything.

      • swaaye
      • 9 years ago

      Well you know it takes years to design a new CPU. Atom has been out for years now. So I have to wonder what they’ve been working on in the meantime. They have a boatload of R&D going on over at Intel and you can bet they’re exploring a lot of things we don’t know about.

      Besides, tablets are still a fad at this point and I’m not convinced yet that they will become more than that. Not very many people are convinced of their utility outside of the techie fad crowd.

      And also, most what the market does isn’t decided by governments but more by what the masses want. Even in China. China is maybe the best example of that in some ways.

      • d0g_p00p
      • 9 years ago

      Intel and AMD x86 processors are needed because they run Windows. I think there will be a decent change when Windows 8 comes out with full ARM support. Then again it needs binary compatibility with x86 software in order to succeed. It can be done with virtualization as long as the ARM CPU has enough power to not have a noticeable speed decrease.

        • MadManOriginal
        • 9 years ago

        So in order to save the x86 overhead (which everyone who wants to poopoo x86 overstates) but run x86 code ARM will do virtualization? I’m not saying ARM isn’t power efficient but for that usage how is running in software better than dedicated hardware? And who remembers Transmeta…

    • dpaus
    • 9 years ago

    [quote<]"...corporations phasing out Winows XP.."[/quote<] Yeah, we're 'winnowing out' all our XP systems, too

      • Meadows
      • 9 years ago

      Oh, it’s just Cyril. Isn’t he a pleasure.

      • Palek
      • 9 years ago

      I wish there was some winnowing out going on here, too. XP is looking and feeling very stale now that I have been using Windows 7 at home for a while.

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