Intel faces a challenging 2012 ahead before any windfall lands on its coffers from powering up Microsoft’s Windows 8 tablet, according to Minneapolis-based mid-market investment firm Piper Jaffray.
In a research note, Gus Richard, analyst from Piper Jaffray, today said: “We believe CY12 (calendar year 2012) is shaping up to be a difficult year for Intel…. We expect 2H12 (second half 2012) to be weak ahead of the launch of Windows 8, the most significant upgrade to the operating system since Windows 3.0.”
For decades now, Intel has been benefiting from Microsoft’s OS iterations as consumers and companies purchase new and increasingly more powerful PCs using its new generation CPU engines. But the corporate benefits of its next generation dual core “Clover Trail” chip hinges on how fast the market shifts to the new Windows 8 OS. Consumers are known to postpone upgrades to their PCs until the new OS arrives and corporations do a lot of tests to win its IT departments that an upgrade is in order.
The investment bank expressed concerns over the fact that the 2012 Windows 8 beta release has already been delayed. Compounding the challenge is the fact that the PC has seen its sales volume decline with the overwhelming popularity of the tablet trend led by Apple’s iPad and other tablet makers eating into its share of the consumer computing markets, DigiTimes reports.
The Redmond giant has been silent on a definite release date for its new OS which will support full-featured touchscreen, a first for a PC OS. Industry sources at the recent CES shared the opinion that its release would most likely happen in the second quarter of 2012. But even that could slip.
Richard admits that the launch date for Windows 8 “could easily slip into the Christmas timeframe or into CY13. Moreover, application software vendors are indicating that they are having to make more significant changes to their code than expected. This calls into question how well legacy applications will run on Windows.”
Not surprisingly, the Santa Clara based chip maker is more optimistic in the last CES, showcasing tablets (literally inside glass case) that run on Windows 8. CEO Paul Otellini is confident about the boon Windows 8 will have on his company. That means its chips running Windows 8 will open up new ultrabooks that sit between the laptop and tablet offering a level of backward compatibility not possible on competing ARM chips from the likes of NVidia, Qualcomm, and Texas Instruments.