Researchers at Taiwan's Digitimes have bad news for Intel: it just isn't going to sell many chips for mobile devices.
Intel's thrown a lot of time, money and effort at mobile devices, but its efforts have resulted in red ink, a re-org to combine mobile and desktop products, and rumours of imminent layoffs.
Digitimes now says that 2015 will see just 10.8 million Intel-powered Android tablets reach punters, “down from 14.23 million shipped a year earlier.” There's some growth for Chipzilla in Android handsets, more than 10 million of which are expected to have Intel inside this year.
Both figures are, however, drops in the Great Gadget Ocean. IDC reckons the world will make about 230 million tablets and phablets this year, plus another 1.447 billion smartphones. If Digitimes is right, Intel's going to win slivers of those markets. And nasty thin slivers at that.
There's some solace in growing demand for two-in-one typoslabs that blend a PC and tablet, which Digitimes thinks will kick Intel's overall mobile CPU sales up to 46 million a year. Selling that many of anything is an impressive achievement. It's just that Intel's rivals are selling orders of magnitude more into tablets and smartmobes, classes of device that seem destined to escape the x86 hegemony.
No wonder the company's mobile division is bleeding: Intel's experiencing a famine amidst a feast of mobile device sales and things don't look like turning around despite its best engineering and ecosystem-building efforts.