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Intel and Arm are not slugging it out

by on11 August 2010

Different products different markets
An independent investment bank Gleacher has claimed that reports of Intel and Arm being at each other's throats are misguided. In a report, with the catchy title “Assessing ARM vs. x86: The Battle is Heating Up,” the back said that both outfits will have their work cut out penetrating each other’s markets.

Many observers have been comparing embedded ARM vs. embedded Atoms as proof that the two outfits are slugging it out, but Gleacher claims this is an unfair comparison. Both outfits target different market segments using different software with different performance expectations.

Doug Freedman, the managing director of research at Gleacher said that ARM will not support full notebook functionality as the embedded chips have yet to demonstrate the ability to run on notebooks. The standard high-end 1GHz ARM core which is under the bonnet of stuff made by TI, Qualcomm, NVIDIA and Marvell is OK for smartphones and tablets, it is not yet enough to compete with the Atom’s 1.66GHz and the “significant amount of processing overhead for application, O/S, and driver requirements,” needed with a PC.

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