Intel's (INTC) 2016 product announcements, M&A activity and layoffs have all had a grand, overarching theme to them: The chip giant no longer expects the PC CPU market to be a growth driver, and is instead focusing most of its resources on supplying processors and complementary chips for data center hardware and embedded devices.
It makes sense that this effort includes a push to grow Intel's presence within cars -- the largest embedded chip market if one excludes mobile phones, and one whose size is steadily growing thanks to several trends. But it's also a hotly competitive market in which automakers hold a lot of sway, and as Intel's latest automotive announcement shows, one in which the company will sometimes need a helping hand from fellow chipmakers.
Five months after Intel announced a deal with BMW and top automotive vision processor supplier Mobileye (MBLY) to help BMW bring a self-driving car to market by 2021, the company has announced it's teaming with Mobileye and auto parts giant Delphi (DLPH) to provide self-driving systems for automakers in general. Mobileye and Delphi had already inked a deal in August to develop a self-driving system that they promised would be "production ready for 2019."
In addition, Intel announced on Tuesday that it's creating an Automated Driving Group (ADG) to spearhead the development of self-driving solutions; the unit will be headed by former IoT Group chief Doug Davis. The move comes two weeks after Intel declared its VC arm (Intel Capital) will make over $250 million in autonomous driving-related investments.
Interestingly, Intel says the solution it's working on with Delphi and Mobileye will initially feature a CPU from Intel's high-end Core i7 line, and will eventually use a more powerful processor set to be unveiled in a few weeks. As of November 9, the cheapest Core i7 CPU had a list price of $303.