Intel CEO Outlines Company Future Surrounding Smart Devices, Secure IoT Applications

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich took the stage at Intel Developer Forum on Tuesday in San Francisco to outline the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company's commercial and consumer real-time applications for the Internet of Things.

Shying away from Intel's traditional focuses -- including PCs, data center and newly revealed processors -- Krzanich instead discussed the company's newest innovations with IoT-based applications and endpoints, including sensitization, smart and connected technology, and personalized wearables.

"Now [today's world] is expanding to include more human-like sensors, providing new and immersive experiences for users," he said. "As you move across verticals, you can see that these end-to-end solutions provide an opportunity for a smart retail segment. This is the kind of solution that we believe we can build in every vertical, with our partners, with [developers] here today."

[Related: Intel Developer Forum: Skylake Strategy To Take Center Stage]

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Krzanich mentioned little about Skylake, Intel's newest sixth-generation 14 nm microarchitecture or about innovations within the sluggish PC market or Intel's booming Data Center Group, instead using his keynote address to discuss with developers what the company is doing with connected devices and IoT vertical-based applications.

On the sensitization side, Krzanich demonstrated how Intel is utilizing its RealSense technology in real-life industrial applications for point-of-sale retail customers. RealSense, which Intel has expanded to become ubiquitous within applications, will now support a variety of OSs, including Windows 10, Android, Linux and other application platforms.

He showed off RealSense in a smartphone prototype for developers, a project that Intel and Google collaborated on dubbed "Project Tango," which allows users to take virtual reality-based photos of room models on their phone; as well as Relay, a robot developed by Savioke that uses visual RealSense for the hospitality space to relay items from staff to guests in hotels.

Adding onto the Internet of Things space, Krzanich also introduced enhanced privacy identification (EPID) with chip vendor licensees MicroChip and Atmel, a silicon-level root of trust, designed to enable secure and anonymous communication for applications.

"Now as these billions of devices become smart-connected, you need platform, security, tools, the developer zone, and you have to connect with them," he said.

Patrick Moorhead, founder and principal research analyst at Moor Insights & Strategies, stressed that there was a larger emphasis on Internet of Things and the mobile segment during this year's keynote. He said one striking aspect of the keynote was that several of the applications demonstrated were not just futuristic concepts, but were already on the market and driving revenue for businesses.

For example, Intel showed off its MemoMi MemoryMirror solution, a smart mirror with an Intel Core i7 processor and Iris graphics, which is expanding to 16 Neiman Marcus stores across the nation.

"There was a lot of emphasis on endpoints versus the data center or new chips," said Moorhead. "The Internet of Things and endpoints are in the same space, and it shows that Intel is trying to be at the forefront of the IoT market."

The Internet of Things is a lucrative market for Intel, as its IoT group grew 11 percent in the first quarter of 2015, compared with the same year-ago period, based on strength in the retail and digital security market segments, according to the company.

Partners, for their part, applauded Intel's strong emphasis on the Internet of Things, stressing that there are ample opportunities across various industries.

"Within IOT, for system builders, I think the Retail segment particularly related to POS and digital signage would be very exciting," said Kent Tibbils, vice president of marketing at ASI, a Fremont, Calif.-based Intel partner. "Giving a business owner the ability to analyze point-of-sale data with inventory as well as pricing, and then use that information to adjust signage in real time would have a lot of benefits to the business."