Intel paid out $16.7-billion in cash to acquire Altera and their FPGA technology in an effort to develop new products for the IoT. (via Intel)
The Internet of Things is fast becoming integral in our daily lives in many ways- we have smart appliances, homes and wearables with new advancements in the technology breaking annually. Intel has taken notice of those IoT advancements and has taken measures to secure their future in a world of connected things. The company recently announced a $16.7-billion deal that would acquire chipmaker Altera and plans on merging their FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) technology into Intel’s new chips and manufacturing process.
To be more specific- Intel plans on incorporating the FPGA tech into their future line of Xeon processors while simultaneously improving Altera’s ARM-based and power-management products using Intel’s own 14-nm manufacturing process. Altera’s FPGA integrated circuit design allows customers to configure the chips after the manufacturing process (hence the Field Programmable part) using an array of programmable logic blocks. This makes them ideal for smart devices that connect to the internet as they can be programmed with specific tasks.
As a testament to Intel’s desire to capitalize on the IoT revolution, they have also announced the opening of their IoT Ignition Lab at the company’s Lexilip campus in Ireland. The Lab’s primary goal is to exploit new ways the IoT can be harnessed for smart cities, homes and buildings as well as the agriculture and energy sectors. The vice president of Intel’s IoT Group stated that Ireland was chosen to host the Ignition Lab as the nation has ‘one of the most vibrant tech landscapes in the world’ and believes that Ireland is at the forefront to drive innovation in the world of IoT (or maybe because the IoT and whiskey go hand-in-hand?). Ireland isn’t the only nation to host similar Intel labs as the company has tech development facilities in Stockholm, Swindon, Munich, Istanbul and Haifa (not known for their whiskey).
Never at a loss for words, Intel also announced at Computex the expansion of their IoT Gateway product line, which includes Intel Core processor-based Wind River and Intelligent Device Platform XT 3 as well as the 5th generation of their Core-line of processors. Suffice it to say, all of the announcements Intel has made in the last week paint them as the front-runner of IoT for companies that design and manufacture processors and it will be interesting to see what their competitors (looking at you AMD) have in store to keep up the competition.
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