Wednesday, November 27th 2019

Intel is Looking to Sell Connected Home Division

Intel is reportedly looking to sell its connected home devices division, a company unit used for designing semiconductors that enable WiFi connection in all kinds of devices and SoCs made for managing network devices like WiFi routers. Following a previous deal, where Intel sold its modem division to Apple for 1 billion USD, Intel is now looking to "get rid of" another unit that is not doing any data-centric design workload.

The Connected Home division had around 450 million USD last year in annual sales, but it seems that competition is getting good with competing offers from Broadcom Inc. and Qualcomm Inc. If the unit is potentially sold to another company, Intel could rewire its R&D funds to other groups inside the company. Additionally, it is worth to mention that a financial advisor has reportedly been hired to evaluate any possible offers that Intel receives.
Source: Bloomberg
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22 Comments on Intel is Looking to Sell Connected Home Division

#1
Steevo
Strange, how everyday people can't afford the close to 50K it would cost to make their whole house "smart" at retail prices. And those that think it's kinda cool usually make their own setup?
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#2
Vayra86
Steevo
Strange, how everyday people can't afford the close to 50K it would cost to make their whole house "smart" at retail prices. And those that think it's kinda cool usually make their own setup?
Yeah this smart home ain't gonna fly. Until Apple does it, perhaps, pulling another Iphone.

Because that is really what it needs. Right now its a weird mess of protocols and leaky equipment, overpriced for what it does and more prone to failure than simple switches and locks.
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#3
Bones
I'd have to guess it's them feeling the pinch and trying to shore up resources before things start going sour - You know, keep the investors happy.
They've been hurting as of late, no secret there and now that AMD has (Once again) spanked that backside with their newest chips it's kinda looking that way to me.

I could be wrong but I woudn't doubt it either.
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#4
R0H1T
You mean that IoT thing ain't as big a deal as they were touting it to be, yeah never saw that one coming!
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#5
notb
Steevo
Strange, how everyday people can't afford the close to 50K it would cost to make their whole house "smart" at retail prices. And those that think it's kinda cool usually make their own setup?
I assume you mean standalone houses, but that's just part of the market.
What do you mean by "whole house smart"? Everything controlled remotely? Is that necessary?

Intel is not trying to create a market or playing a long game. It's entering something that already exists and will only grow with time.

"Smart home" tech today is more about high-end apartments. And it's very common in this niche.
Even in less developed countries, like mine (Poland), most newly built high-end flats have a smart home system included.
It's mostly about saving energy: heating, lights and A/C if present. Sometimes they include sensors for open doors and windows.
It usually pays off in bills or insurance rates.

A typical apartment has a few heaters, few windows and single front door. So it's not a great cost to connect them.

R0H1T
You mean that IoT thing ain't as big a deal as they were touting it to be, yeah never saw that one coming!
It definitely is. Look at modern offices, production plants, warehouses, mass transit, agriculture etc. They're all very "IoT" already. But they're "IoT" because it makes economical sense.

Consumer IoT will need more time to get traction, because it's mostly a luxury, not an investment. That's why we start from basic stuff that is most convincing - like smart heating.
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#6
R0H1T
notb
Even in less developed countries, like mine (Poland), most newly built high-end flats have a smart home system included.
It's mostly about saving energy: heating, lights and A/C if present. Sometimes they include sensors for open doors and windows.
It usually pays off in bills or insurance rates.
You don't really need smart anything for that. Want to save on fan bills, buy BLDC fans ~ they save "up to" 80% as compared to traditional fans. Want better AC ~ get dual inverter models, some are 7 (energy)star rated. Want to save on lights ~ LED, again up to 5 stars. Refrigerators ~ 5 star inverter models.

As for buildings & structures, the material used for construction as well as design will do more than any "smart" sensor ever will. The only utility for smart homes, as far as I'm concerned, is to be somehow always connected with your devices or home! Yeah I'm not doing that & not boarding the hype train anytime soon :shadedshu:
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#7
notb
R0H1T
You don't really need smart anything for that. Want to save on fan bills, buy BLDC fans ~ they save "up to" 80% as compared to traditional fans.
Honestly, I haven't even thought about them. And I've only seen them in American-themed burger bars. :D
Are there any nations other than Americans that use ceiling fans on large scale?
Want better AC ~ get dual inverter models, some are 7 (energy)star rated.
AC is a tiny niche in Europe (in households). Mild climate makes it unnecessary. But yeah, in US and tropical Asia it's fairly common.
Want to save on lights ~ LED, again up to 5 stars.
We don't have traditional light bulbs in Europe anymore. LEDs and fluorescent lamps dominate the market.
As for buildings & structures, the material used for construction as well as design will do more than any "smart" sensor ever will. The only utility for smart homes, as far as I'm concerned, is to be somehow always connected with your devices or home! Yeah I'm not doing that & not boarding the hype train anytime soon :shadedshu:
Thing is though, when everyone build from similar (good) materials, when everyone use LEDs, when everyone have eco fridges - how do you differentiate?
Because some buildings will still want to be more "eco" than the others. It's the same trend that we've seen in offices for a long time (eco classes, certificates etc).

But from a practical and financial point of view, it still makes a lot of sense. Really. Especially in places where you need heating for half a year.

And on the other hand: this is just nice tech and it makes some people feel better. That's it.
Some people are aroused by RGB. Some by Cinebench scores. And some by time-controlled heaters.
And are you trying to tell me that RGB and Cinebench have more sense than smart homes? Really? :D
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#8
Chrispy_
IoT/smart home is a security wreck and real-world failure that ordinary people don't care about.

This news surprises no one. About the only smart-home thing that has really penetrated the market is Amazon Echo.
Posted on Reply
#9
R0H1T
notb
Honestly, I haven't even thought about them. And I've only seen them in American-themed burger bars. :D
Are there any nations other than Americans that use ceiling fans on large scale?
That sounds rather cynical, as far as I know more "fans" are sold at or near the tropics than ACs & if you count just the developing world it wins by a landslide.
notb
AC is a tiny niche in Europe (in households). Mild climate makes it unnecessary. But yeah, in US and tropical Asia it's fairly common.
Not sure if this is just a European thing, but ACs far outsell heating devices (for rooms or home) all over the world.
notb
We don't have traditional light bulbs in Europe anymore. LEDs and fluorescent lamps dominate the market.
Well I've been using just LEDs for 5+ years now at home. In fact LEDs are now so cheap here that we have kind of an oversupply problem, especially given that the govt subsidies them at some level, for domestic consumption.
notb
Thing is though, when everyone build from similar (good) materials, when everyone use LEDs, when everyone have eco fridges - how do you differentiate?
Because some buildings will still want to be more "eco" than the others. It's the same trend that we've seen in offices for a long time (eco classes, certificates etc).

But from a practical and financial point of view, it still makes a lot of sense. Really. Especially in places where you need heating for half a year.

And on the other hand: this is just nice tech and it makes some people feel better. That's it.
Some people are aroused by RGB. Some by Cinebench scores. And some by time-controlled heaters.
And are you trying to tell me that RGB and Cinebench have more sense than smart homes? Really? :D
From personal experience I do know know that the most "energy efficient" materials are not used for construction in India, even for commercial projects let alone homes. The same is the case in most places around the world, including the developed world.

Yes but there's 2 things here, 3 in reality ~ some materials while more energy efficient in a building may take a lot more energy for extraction &/or refinement than say traditional materials. So setting aside cost, they may not be the best choice if the energy costs to extract/use them outweighs the potential savings in a building or a structure. Then there's costs ~ sometimes the biggest factor in all of this.

No it really doesn't.

Yes & no ~ I assume you also have counted the energy costs for always connected, always ON devices in a smart home as compared to say a normal but equally (or more) efficient household device like a fan? The point about opening windows or shades is interesting, however as I said you don't need "smart" BS that these companies are selling you. I have a BLDC fan with timer, it can turn off in 2/4/8/12 hours using a simple remote.

Pretty sure you can do this easily with fraction of the energy costs in lots of other not so "smart" stuff at home :toast:
Posted on Reply
#10
eidairaman1
The Exiled Airman
I dont trust any "smart home"
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#11
lynx29
Steevo
Strange, how everyday people can't afford the close to 50K it would cost to make their whole house "smart" at retail prices. And those that think it's kinda cool usually make their own setup?
Maybe they just got distracted, they did seem really happy taking pictures with Trump when breaking ground in Arizona on a new building. I guess they were just so used to his marble and gold palace they overestimated the actual real world ability for people to afford things in this range.
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#12
R-T-B
eidairaman1
I dont trust any "smart home"
I do. But none with cute nicknames. Lotsa reasons for that.

Chrispy_
IoT/smart home is a security wreck and real-world failure that ordinary people don't care about.
Tend to agree. It is in most vendor-provided forms. Some do it yourself systems can be cool though.

R0H1T
You mean that IoT thing ain't as big a deal as they were touting it to be, yeah never saw that one coming!
It's big... but in the wrong industry.

It's big in hacked devices, ala botnets.
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#13
Bones
I'll say it like this:
The smartest app for your home is your own brain if you care to use it.

I'm not too lazy to get my ass off the couch to lock a door, turn off a light, adjust the thermostat or other things. I can do all that for free, not be paying to get spyed on or wasting money on something that can be opened (Hacked) by a lappy.

Nope - There will never be any of this "Smart" crap securing my place.
Posted on Reply
#14
ur6beersaway
Chrispy_
IoT/smart home is a security wreck and real-world failure that ordinary people don't care about.

This news surprises no one. About the only smart-home thing that has really penetrated the market is Amazon Echo.
This….and the "RING" video doorbell (owned by Amazon), very popular in suburbia everywhere...$250 usd to see who's at the door on your phone + $3.00 a month subscription to their "cloud" so you can see who is stealing your Amazon packages...lol
Posted on Reply
#15
R-T-B
Bones
I'll say it like this:
The smartest app for your home is your own brain if you care to use it.

I'm not too lazy to get my ass off the couch to lock a door, turn off a light, adjust the thermostat or other things. I can do all that for free, not be paying to get spyed on or wasting money on something that can be opened (Hacked) by a lappy.

Nope - There will never be any of this "Smart" crap securing my place.
I mean, that'll help a ton when you want to remotely shutoff something you left on. /s

There are use cases. But they are limited, really. And still, same as ever: don't trust the packaged solution online.
Posted on Reply
#16
notb
Bones
I'm not too lazy to get my ass off the couch to lock a door, turn off a light, adjust the thermostat or other things.
50 years ago people have been saying the exact same thing about TV remotes.
R-T-B
There are use cases. But they are limited, really. And still, same as ever: don't trust the packaged solution online.
I'm wondering how much you're against smart home idea itself and how much is it just about your lack of respect for cloud/proprietary stuff. :P

What if it was all open source and connecting over a VPN? :P
R0H1T
Not sure if this is just a European thing, but ACs far outsell heating devices (for rooms or home) all over the world.
I find this very hard to believe to say the least. Data?
You don't have heaters in houses in US? How do keep yourself warm during Winter?
Posted on Reply
#17
R-T-B
notb
I'm wondering how much you're against smart home idea itself and how much is it just about your lack of respect for cloud/proprietary stuff.
Not against the smart home idea at all, or even properly managed propietary. You should have gleaned that. Having net connected, poorly updated, closed binary machines on the net is a huge botnet hazard though that we are already seeing problems from, and I will always be against that.

I'll be for the smarthome the day the devices deactivate their ability to operate once support ends, and support periods are declared and legally enforced.

notb
What if it was all open source and connecting over a VPN?
Depends. How old is the source, where did it come from, and can I reflash it? I mean, you can't run source code... Also whose VPN? VPNs are not magic fix alls:



notb
How do keep yourself warm during Winter?
Blankets. Loads of blankets.

Just messin with ya. We have a heater.
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#18
notb
R-T-B
Not against the smart home idea at all. You should have gleaned that. Having net connected, poorly updated, closed binary machines on the net is a huge botnet hazard though that we are already seeing problems from
I'm not sure why you think smarthome devices are poorly updated. It's far from bad. And actually that's what Intel tries to address.
The more connected IoT devices are, the easier it will be to update them.
and I will always be against that
Acceptable. And I'll always be against overclocking. Lets call it a tie. :)
Just messin with ya. We have a heater.
Yeah, I'd expect them in every home in areas where temperature drops under 10*C (which AFAIK is true for whole USA).
Posted on Reply
#19
R-T-B
notb
I'm not sure why you think smarthome devices are poorly updated. It's far from bad. And actually that's what Intel tries to address.
The more connected IoT devices are, the easier it will be to update them.
I might buy common platform helping, but it's still a mess. I mean the nationwide cyber attacks during obamas term were largely driven by hijacked smartcameras. Fun stuff. Heck even backdoors in routers are common place. The whole industry has demonstrated time and again it needs oversight, and not just in smart devices.


notb
Acceptable. And I'll always be against overclocking. Lets call it a tie. :)
It might be a tie when overclocking hurts other peoples cpus.

BTW, I don't overclock, so tie denied.
Posted on Reply
#20
R0H1T
notb
I find this very hard to believe to say the least. Data?
You don't have heaters in houses in US? How do keep yourself warm during Winter?
Th exact numbers are hard to come by, but for AC we have better/more reliable data ~
The global AC demand for 2018 is ~111 million units of which there are 96+ million room ACs.
https://www.jraia.or.jp/english/World_AC_Demand.pdf

Now for heaters, I'm guesstimating here because a quick glance at Google doesn't yield any "free" info. Taking IEA & Statista you can see that the heater market is rather puny ~
https://www.iea.org/tracking/tcep2018/buildings/heating/
https://www.statista.com/statistics/899117/electric-heater-market-value-worldwide/
R-T-B
Blankets. Loads of blankets.
Actually that's pretty accurate, in places where there isn't snow this is the best way to keep warm especially in the developing world. Also don't forget your sweaters or jackets when you leave home :D
Posted on Reply
#21
notb
R-T-B
I might buy common platform helping, but it's still a mess. I mean the nationwide cyber attacks during obamas term were largely driven by hijacked smartcameras. Fun stuff. Heck even backdoors in routers are common place. The whole industry has demonstrated time and again it needs oversight, and not just in smart devices.
And the issue with cameras (and printers, and webcams) is that they're difficult to update. People don't do it.
Again, an obvious solution would be: connect everything and force updates. But people like you would be against that as well, right? You're open with your opinion about Windows updates.

The only solutions that can work are the extreme ones. We don't connect anything. Or we connect everything, automate everything and keep it smart devices on a short leash.

All mid-way solutions will be flawed (with human being the main source of problems).

It's like with autonomous cars. The idea is brilliant and it may provide some small statistical wins from the start. But the only way to autonomous cars them really safe and prevent any crashes is to connect them to a common network (so that they can "talk") and ban people from having any direct control.
It might be a tie when overclocking hurts other peoples cpus.
It doesn't have to. It's enough that overclocking impacts the market, i.e. companies make compromises.
But I'm slowly getting over it. I understand DIY desktops are all about OC, gamers and blinky RGB. It's just not for me anymore. I'm not having any pleasure from this like I had 15 years ago.
Next time I'll pay the premium and get something from Dell. At least I'll get a normally looking BIOS. :D

R0H1T
Now for heaters, I'm guesstimating here because a quick glance at Google doesn't yield any "free" info. Taking IEA & Statista you can see that the heater market is rather puny ~
https://www.iea.org/tracking/tcep2018/buildings/heating/
https://www.statista.com/statistics/899117/electric-heater-market-value-worldwide/
Actually that's pretty accurate, in places where there isn't snow this is the best way to keep warm especially in the developing world. Also don't forget your sweaters or jackets when you leave home :D
But that's electric heaters. It's the least popular kind (and making the least sense).
In Europe every apartment (in fact: pretty much every room) has a traditional heater (a radiator). Isn't that true in USA?
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#22
R0H1T
notb
But that's electric heaters. It's the least popular kind (and making the least sense).
In Europe every apartment (in fact: pretty much every room) has a traditional heater (a radiator). Isn't that true in USA?
I gave you 2 sets of stats, one by IEA which shows that electric based heaters are roughly half (as compared to fossil fuels) in terms of global heater sales. Radiators & the likes are slightly over 2x & looking at the Statista graph you can see that even combined the ACs are in a separate tier, as far as global (unit)sales as well as overall market value is concerned.

Not from the US, as I said previously, but ACs have always been a bigger market as far as I can remember.
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