Windows 8 is certainly changing the way Windows works with its new interface, Metro, and its ability to support ARM processors.
It is no secret that the ARM processor giant, Qualcomm, is very excited about the future of Windows thanks to its support of ARM and its move into the tablet market.
Qualcomm hopes to use Windows 8 to move into new markets creating robust Windows 8 laptops and even desktops that use ARM technology versus the current standard of x86.
With Qualcomm’s big push with Windows 8, you might think that Intel would be feeling the pressure from the move. So how does Intel feel about the changes that Windows 8 brings to the table? It seems that they are highly ecstatic about where Windows 8 is going.
According to Intel CEO Paul Otellini, “Windows 8 is one of the best things that’s ever happened to our company”. This seems like an interesting statement, and is it really how they feel or simply a PR move to make them seem unaffected?
Otellini has talked fairly extensively about what he calls “myths” surrounding Intel and Windows 8 .
These myths largely covered the idea that ARM will hurt Intel, that the PC is dying breed, and that the chip giant can’t compete in the mobile market due to x86 architecture just not being worthy due to issues like heat and power consumption.
A lot of these alleged issues that Intel is running to have a strong link to Windows 8. Here’s what Otellini said about Windows 8:
We are very excited about Windows 8. I think it’s one of the best things that’s ever happened to our Company. And it’s a very good operating system, not just for PCs, but we think also will allow tablets to really get a legitimacy into mainstream computing, particularly in enterprises that they don’t have today. A lot of the enterprise managers are worried about security, they’re worried about the difficulty affording their legacy applications over to an Android tablet or to an iPad.
What Microsoft is doing is making that seamless for them. And they have a new experience, which they call Metro, that’s the interface up there. But for Intel-based machines, there is also one button that basically takes you back to your classic Windows experience and that’s a software button essentially.
So you’re just running one manifestation of the operating system with two different GUIs, if you will, it’s not running on virtual machines, it’s one manifestation. So this gives us, x86, in particular, I think a unique advantage as Windows 8 comes to market, because we can take advantage of all the legacy that was ever written, and all of the fact that all the drivers for the mice and for printers and every other USB device in the world.
For example, getting photos off your camera and onto a tablet.Try that if you don’t have a driver, doesn’t work. On the other hand, if that tablet is running [an extension] of Windows, it’s going to work just like it works with the PC today. So there is a huge advantage built in that we think we have as the Windows 8 products start launching.
Otellini seems confident that ARM has too many disadvantages when compared to x86 for tabets such as legacy support. Additionally, he made I clear that Intel has a bright future in many markets, including the PC which is far from dead.
One point he made was that tablets may be moving forward in markets like Europe and the States, but for emerging markets PCs are still king and likely will be for some time. China, Brazil, and India are heavily populated countries where an emerging middle class is heavily interested in buying PCs.
Additionally changes to the PC are making it fresh again such as Intel’s Ultrabook standard and Microsoft bringing new interface options such as Kinect, Touch, and Voice.
Otelleni also spoke about the upcoming CES and how they will be showing off their new lower-power mobile initiatives, which will prove that x86 is more than capable of playing nice in the mobile market as well.
Is Otelleni’s positive outlook just a face put on to keep stock prices from plummeting or does Intel really have nothing to worry about?
Honestly, I think that Intel does worry a little but at the same time they are working hard to adopt new strategies that will help them evolve in a new direction to keep relevant, just like Microsoft is doing with Windows.
What do you think, does Intel have anything to worry about when it comes to competition from sources like Qualcomm? Share your thoughts below!