Here's Why Intel Corporation Won't Win Any Samsung Tablets This Year

A slide from a recent presentation from Intel suggests that it's not winning any Samsung tablets anytime soon.

Apr 22, 2014 at 1:15PM

At the Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) Developer Forum, Intel gave a presentation detailing its current family of tablet chips codenamed Bay Trail or, for those who like product names, the Z3700 series. In this presentation, Intel was pretty bullish on this product family and even went so far as to reveal a list of hardware partners that were likely to deploy products based on these chips. Samsung (NASDAQOTH:SSNLF) wasn't on this list.

No Samsung on the list of partners
Take a look at the following slide from last month's Intel Developer Forum presentation:


Source: Intel.

Notice how there is a plethora of companies here across the OEMs, ODMs, and developers (the OEMs are the ones that would matter here), but Samsung isn't listed here? Now, this makes sense given that Samsung designs and builds its own chips in-house and that it uses Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) likely due to Qualcomm's superior integration and because Qualcomm is a Samsung foundry customer.

It appears, then, that as far as tablets go -- at least for Intel's 2014 chip lineup – Intel is out at Samsung after very heavily touting its short-lived Galaxy Tab 3 10.1-inch "win." This is a pretty major PR blow, but, fortunately, there do appear to be some pretty good strategic reasons as to why a potential Samsung/Intel relationship for tablet-oriented applications processors really doesn't make a lot of sense.

Samsung is Intel's enemy
At this point, it's pretty clear that Samsung is an enemy to Intel, not a friend. Samsung is increasingly trying to push Chromebooks with its own custom Exynos processor, and its Windows PC sales have continued to dwindle as it focuses almost exclusively at the high end. Samsung also designs its own apps processors for tablets and phones and builds chips for some of its key component suppliers at its foundries that it hopes to grow over time. This puts Samsung in direct competition with Intel and there is very little incentive to help Intel drive volumes at its factories when it needs to be driving its own volumes.

Furthermore, if Intel were to work with Samsung, it would need to disclose its product road map/plans to Samsung which builds its own chips. While there are probably firewalls and confidentiality agreements that would theoretically keep Samsung's chip division from knowing Intel's plans, things in the industry have a surprising tendency to leak, even over the Internet. 

Doesn't Intel need Samsung, though?
The problem with having Samsung as a competitor in apps processors is that about 30% of the smartphone market and close to that worth of the tablet market belongs to Samsung. While Intel could certainly win designs with the rest of the non-Apple/non-Samsung market, this really does restrict its TAM quite a bit, which makes it that much more difficult to recoup the fairly substantial investment that it is making in mobile processors.

Interestingly enough, Samsung has been using Intel modems (but not apps processors), using the XMM 7160 in the Galaxy Tab 3 LTE and the Galaxy Note 3 Neo and even committing to using the next-generation XMM 7260 in upcoming phones/tablets, but these aren't built at Intel's factories and don't directly compete with Samsung's own modems (which appear to have just fallen by the wayside). It will be important to watch for any new developments with Samsung's own modems going forward or if Samsung is able to score more Qualcomm modems in its foundry.

Foolish bottom line
While Samsung seems OK with using Intel's modems (since there are really only two leading edge modem players at this point -- Intel and Qualcomm), the apps processor story for phones and tablets looks much more grim Intel over at Samsung. Maybe in the future if Intel develops a product so compelling -- particularly for the low end where Samsung doesn't really focus its apps processor energies -- then we'll start to see Intel Inside more of Samsung's products. But for now, and in tablets, Intel looks pretty "out" at Samsung.

Intel missed mobile, but you shouldn't miss this!
If you thought the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad were amazing, just wait until you see this. One hundred of Apple's top engineers are busy building one in a secret lab. And an ABI Research report predicts 485 million of them could be sold over the next decade. But you can invest in it right now... for just a fraction of the price of AAPL stock. Click here to get the full story in this eye-opening new report.

Ashraf Eassa owns shares of Intel. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Intel. It also owns shares of Qualcomm. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.

Compare Brokers