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Currently, the American chip manufacturer provides the thrust behind Google Glass, but the internet giant may turn its back on America in search of Taiwanese silicon, suggest people familiar with the matter.
Intel does have considerable experience in producing lightweight, energy efficient CPUs, but primarily for larger devices.
The move should come as no surprise though, especially since Intel has been vying for a larger mobile device market share. Of course, that hasn’t gone particularly swimmingly of late in terms of smartphones, and focus clearly remains on desktop, laptop and tablet silicon with the launch of its Core M fanless processors earlier this year.
But if we were to speculate on a platform that could fit the bill, Intel’s Quark SoC is targeted at markets “undergoing exciting and even game-changing transitions.” There’s also Intel’s soFIA platform, which caters to cheaper sub-US$100 smartphones. Then there’s the odd chance that Intel might be building an entirely new platform exclusively for Google Glass.
We know that the current version of Glass boasts 2GB RAM and a dual-core 1.2GHz Texas Instruments CPU, but can Intel offer better hardware at a more competitive price? One of the Glass’s major criticisms has been the ridiculous cost of the device.
The deal however might be more of a financial ploy than a strictly hardware agreement. Arguably, with two giants of the industry developing one (questionably) world leading product, it might make more sense for both manufacturers to join marketing forces.
Google and Intel have yet to comment on the report, but is Google Glass really still relevant in mainstream markets, considering the public backlash the device has accrued? That’s perhaps the most important unanswered question in Google’s master plan.