At the Intel Solution Summit this week, Intel’s transformation from being a chip maker for PCs and servers to a do-all, be-all tech giant in the consumer and embedded technologies space seemed more tangible than ever.
And as the Silicon Valley staple continues to extend its reach into new markets, it’s striving to ensure its channel partners can extend a reach of their own.
C.J. Bruno, vice president and general manager of Americas Sales and Marketing at Intel, told solution providers during the event’s opening keynote that the company is investing $12 billion this year alone in R&D efforts. He flipped through slides and played videos that highlighted new uses for Intel technology, ranging from automated farming to infotainment systems in cars.
He said Intel has even placed anthropologists in the homes of PC users around the world to identify human computing patterns and help define future form factors. The Ultrabook, in other words, is just the beginning, Bruno stressed.
"We are enormously grateful to you for your work in 2012," Bruno told solution providers. "And as we look forward, we see no limits. We see tremendous opportunity for us together to harvest."
Steve Dallman, vice president of sales and Marketing Group and General Manager of Intel’s Worldwide Reseller Organization, also spoke recently about growing opportunities for partners in the digital signage and enthusiast markets, sending a message of transformation similar to that of Bruno’s.
In an interview with CRN, Dallman expanded on the topic of transformation, explaining that Intel is "blessed" to be a company with the R&D bandwidth to "look out in the future" and spot new market opportunities on the horizon. Its global reach also helps generate new product ideas, he said, recalling the day Intel Japanese employees told him SSDs would be a big hit in enthusiast markets – a concept that may not have surfaced so quickly in the U.S.
But while moving into new markets ensures solid growth and an ever-expanding product portfolio, it can also mean partners are caught in a constant game of catch-up, Dallman noted. Even with robust training programs in place, some resellers simply fail to evolve and their business suffer because of it. Or, worse yet, their businesses end because of it.
"I always kind of regret and worry about… do they [Intel resellers] grab the next things and move forward?," Dallman said.
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