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Intel Probably Won't Reach 70 Million Tablet Chips Next Year, CEO Says

A downturn in the tablet market makes his earlier goal likely too optimistic, CEO Brian Krzanich told Re/code.


Intel CEO Bryan Krzanich said earlier this year that Intel could ship as many as 70 million tablet chips next year, but on Thursday he told Re/code that number was probably overly optimistic.

“I don’t think our standalone number will be that high,” Krzanich said in a brief interview on the sidelines of an investor meeting.

Krzanich said the company’s technology might make it into that many tablets, but that would depend on also getting a boost from chips made through a partnership with China’s Rockchip. Tablet growth industrywide has slowed since Krzanich made his earlier comments back in June.

The company is on track to power 40 million tablets this year, reaching Krzanich’s goal. However, those gains have come at a huge cost, with Intel paying device makers to use its chips in their products.

Intel did say earlier in the meeting that it plans to narrow the losses from its mobile business, which have been in the billions of dollars this year as the company looks to make up lost ground in the phone and tablet markets.

CFO Stacy Smith clarified later in the meeting that the company expects to be able to narrow its mobile operating losses next year by about $800 million. But with the unit seen losing about $4 billion this year, that still leaves a pretty big loss for 2015.

Asked in a question-and-answer session whether Intel had a goal for 2015, Krzanich said to expect the company to grow roughly in line with the overall market and to focus on narrowing losses rather than grabbing a bigger slice of the market.

“There’s not a need to gain share or grow footprint,” Krzanich said.

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