New Intel CEO Wants to Beat Apple

Posted on January 16, 2021 by Paul Thurrott in Apple, Hardware, Mobile with 33 Comments

Well, Pat Gelsinger was clearly the right person to lead Intel. In his first all-hands meeting with employees, he emphasized the need to beat Apple.

The account of Gelsinger’s first appearance with employees comes via The Oregonian.

“We have to deliver better products to the PC ecosystem than any possible thing that a lifestyle company in Cupertino,” Gelsinger told employees on Thursday. “We have to be that good, in the future.”

To be clear, Gelsinger is referring here to Apple Silicon and the other chipsets advances that the Cupertino consumer electronics giant has made against more established players like AMD, Intel, and Qualcomm. Apple started to transition the Mac off of Intel chips last year and is expected to finalize that transition next year.

Gelsinger has many other related issues to contend with, too, of course. Key among them is a decision that Intel has now delayed regarding whether it should outsource chipset production so that it can move to smaller manufacturing processes. Intel is currently stuck with 10- and 14-nm chip designs while Apple, AMD, and others have moved to smaller and more efficient 5- and 7-nm processes thanks to TSMC and other manufacturers.

“The company has made strong progress on its 7-nm process technology and plans on providing an update when it reports its full fourth-quarter and full-year 2020 results as previously scheduled on January 21, 2021,” an Intel statement notes. It was issued the day before Intel announced Gelsinger as its next CEO.

On that score, Gelsinger hinted to employees that Intel will likely outsource its most advanced chips while it continues to build most of its chips and evolve its own factories to handle smaller manufacturing processes. The faster this happens, the better.

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