Intel ‘Winding Down’ its Digital TV Offerings4:25 PM EST Mon. Oct. 31, 2011
Despite record-breaking Q3 earnings, Intel will be "winding down" its digital TV system-on-chip (SoC) offerings, after struggling to gain traction in the space.
According to the IHS iSuppli Digital TV & Set-Top Box Market Tracker report the semiconductor giant lost much of its market real-estate in the first half of 2011 to Taiwanese chip manufacturers, Mstar Semiconductor and MediaTek, which accounted for 36 percent and 12 percent market share, respectively.
U.S.-based Trident Microsystems held 6 percent market share, while Intel and "other new entrants," accounted for 2 percent.
Intel’s digital TV system-on-chips backed the Google TV initiative – or Smart TV platform – co-developed by Intel, Google, Sony and Logitech International in 2010.
Randy Lawson, principal analyst for display and consumer electronics at IHS, showed little surprise at Intel’s announcement, in light of the Smart TV development lacking "clear standards."
"In a television semiconductor market characterized by entrenched suppliers and weak near-term growth prospects, Intel was facing enormous challenges in trying to establish itself as a competitor," Lawson said in a statement. "And with the first-generation Google TV products proving unsatisfactory given their slow sales, it’s no surprise that Intel is moving away from the television SoC market."
Intel spokesperson Kathy Gill told CRN that, while the firm will continue to focus on its Cable and IPTV businesses, a shift within the CE space has been confirmed.
"Intel is changing its approach in the smart TV space," Gill told CRN. "Intel will continue to address the TV market segment and related smart TV usage models by focusing on the Cable and IPTV businesses. This includes supplying silicon and software that enable digital media experiences on TVs through products such as set-top-boxes and cable gateways. We believe the future of television is in IP delivery and multi-screen usages, and we are aligning our CE efforts to these areas."
There will be a reshuffling of Intel resources, Gill noted, as former CE resources will be re-allocated to the organization’s Netbook and Tablet group.
"Intel will wind down operations in the digital TV (i.e., flat panel) media processor business and will no longer develop silicon for flat panel TVs after our next generation 32nm chip ships next year," she said. "There are tremendous synergies between tablets and TVs as both are mainly content consumption, viewing devices, and we are expanding the charter of our Netbook and Tablet Group by combining it with the CE business, which includes the Cable and IPTV businesses."