In an interview by Reuter at CES 2012, Warren East, CEO of ARM Holdings, said that he was not impressed with Intel's mobile processors that targeted at smartphones and tablets. He said that Intel had taken some of their chip designs and literally cramped them into the performance-space that will roughly handle the computing needs of smartphones.
His comments were made in the wake of Intel's announcement at the same event where Intel announced new partnerships and two new smartphones with Lenovo and Motorola Mobility. His remarks seem to be made in response to Intel's current attempt to challenge ARM in the smartphone and tablet markets. These markets require low power consumption processors in order to prolong their battery lives without too sacrificing on their computing power.
East's blunt remarks about Intel underscore ARM Holding's confidence in facing Intel's challenge. His confidence may stem from the fact that his company currently licenses its ARM chips to over 250 different hardware and software companies including its new ARM Cortex-A7 design. This new chip design is touted to offer a 20% reduction in power consumption and improving performance over previous designs like its ARM Cortex A9 which are present in a number of phones from Motorola and Samsung.
Besides courting smartphone makers, ARM also counts the Redmond software giant, Microsoft, as one of its important partners as Microsoft’s Windows 8 will also run on ARM’s processors natively. The firm’s upcoming ARMv8 64-bit architecture will also compete against Intel in the PC and server markets as ARM attempts to bring the advantages of energy-efficient 64-bit computing to these markets.
The year ahead will definitely bring interesting developments as ARM and Intel will compete against each other in their own respective markets where their product launches are in direct competition. There may not be a clear winner in terms of the dominance of these markets but the competition may benefit the ultimate winner - the consumer.