Intel’s new CEO has said he’ll be focusing on mobile, so what better way to do that than to buy HTC? Here are the reasons:
- HTC is the #3 smartphone OEM (in the US). It’s not exactly Samsung, but it’s not Kyocera (who?) either.
- Internal chaos at HTC. The time to strike is exactly as confusion reigns from Taiwan (HTC’s base) to Seattle (HTC’s US headquarters).
- Intel needs x86 smartphone flagships in the US. There are no flagship x86 phones on the US market, mostly because of #4 below:
- There’s currently no compelling reason to chose x86 over ARM for phones specifically.* ARM is actually far ahead of x86 in the smartphone space, especially in terms of multicore CPUs. If Intel wants to see major x86 phones, it might have to churn them out itself.
- HTC makes competitive products. The HTC One has been fairly well received all around.
- Intel could give HTC access to a component supply chain and manufacturing base it wouldn’t have otherwise. Intel owns its chip foundries. As far as I know, Samsung is the only other phone OEM who does.
*On the other hand, there is plenty of reason to chose x86 over ARM for tablets and larger devices.