When Intel has faced competition in the past it has been able to overcome it by delivering better chips at lower prices. That's precisely what it is doing this time.
But the problem today isn't the chip. It's the integrated business model under which the chip is produced. Design has become detached from manufacturing. There are only four main chip foundries left, including Intel, due to the cost of the necessary equipment, which is just as much a product of Moore's Law as faster and cheaper chips are.
Device makers have become accustomed to controlling their designs and having a company like Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM) or (in Apple's case) Samsung deliver the chips as-needed. It's the control of the business model, not the price and power consumption of the chip, that they are focused on.
Intel still doesn't get that. It's still delivering chips, good chips but chips, to Original Equipment Manufacturers, or OEMs, who are expected to turn those chips into something they can sell.As the Haswell Chromebook example shows, that can require customization that makes these chips less than what Intel supplied, meaning they go out under obsolete brand names, and consumers don't see that there's anything really new here at all. Until Intel addresses the business model problem, analysts will question whether it has redefined itself at all. At the time of publication, the author held shares of AAPL and GOOG. Follow @DanaBlankenhor This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.
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