Intel is big in software – even if you didn’t know it!

Intel is big in software. It's at the heart of solutions and is key to helping unleash hardware to accelerate innovation.

“We have to deliver the software capabilities, and then we have to empower it, accelerate it, make it more secure with hardware underneath it. And to me, this is the big bit flip that I need to drive at Intel.” Pat Gelsinger, Intel CEO.

Articles featuring Intel’s software focus have been making headlines over the last few weeks including this major CRN story featuring our CEO.

We’re also hosting the latest Intel ON virtual event on October 27-28, which is a educational tech event focused on software and development. I guess it shouldn’t be surprising that the role of software and developers play in helping accelerate transformation are top of mind right now.

Our Software Pedigree

In 2012, Forbes called us “The Biggest Software Company You've Never Heard Of.”

That statement is so true. We are renown for our hardware but many people don’t know how deep our software roots run.

  • More than 2 decades ago, we committed to open source software development.
  • Intel employs more than 15,000 software engineers.
  • There are a trillion lines of code optimized for our x86 chips.
  • We have optimized more than 100 different operating systems.
  • Intel is the #1 contributor to the Linux kernel, a top-3 contributor to Chromium OS, and a top-10 contributor to OpenStack.
  • Our Open Source Technology Center is a repository of the hundreds of open source projects.
  • Our developer ecosystem is about 20 million & millions of developers use Intel® Software development tools and libraries.

Software Unlocks Innovation

It’s fair to say that software is at the heart of the solutions. It helps unleash hardware and helps us realize the full benefits and performance of new hardware architecture.

We see software that’s performant, open and productive, and support our drive to innovate across six pillars of technology development as the key to unleashing the power of data.

And, we’ve built some amazing open source solutions and toolkits to empower developers and accelerate solution development:

  • OneAPIa new, unified software programming model for CPU, GPU, AI, and FPGA accelerators.
  • OpenVino: a toolkit to facilitate faster inference of deep learning models to develop high performance computer vision and deep learning solutions from device to the cloud.
  • Lava: addresses the need for a common framework for the neuromorphic research community. It’s an open-source software framework for developing neuro-inspired applications.
  • Intel® DevCloud: our software sandbox to test out the latest tools and hardware.

And there’s more.

We recognize that by jointly designing, building, and validating new products with software industry leaders we can accelerate advancements by ensuring that software and hardware work better together.

The Man with the Plan

Since Pat Gelsinger rejoined Intel in January, he has been forging a clear path for Intel and underscored the need to adopt a software first strategy – one that makes Intel the silicon platform of choice from edge to cloud.

And that strategy has an important component for channel partners:

“We have to grow the partners. Some of those will be ISVs. Some of those will be SaaS providers as well,” Gelsinger told CRN. “Many of those skills need to become part of our channel partners’ repertoires as well, as they increase their cloud and SaaS capabilities and their software capabilities.”

“ … he’s (Gelsinger) driving a broad recognition across Intel that if we win with software, then we’re going to make it easier for our ecosystem of partners to deliver solutions around Intel,” says John Kalvin.

Stop Focusing on Products!

People buy solutions not products. People are focused on outcomes not products.

As IT partners, we need to focus on solutions not products, and make it easier for our customers to deploy those solutions in their environments. For Intel, this means ensuring that our solutions and the workloads that matter most are optimized to run best on our hardware – whether that solution is on prem, at the edge or in the cloud.

The surge in as-a-service offerings supports the need for complete solutions. Our ecosystem partners have been responding by increasing their software and services focus. Whether that means expanding in house software development capabilities to deliver a new “as-a-service” offering or looking to partner with a development team, we know that open source solutions, optimized to perform on Intel hardware can help accelerate solution deployment – and perhaps open new revenue streams.

“We have to work with our partners to bring [those capabilities] forward in new ways that could create new business models, and there [are] possibilities of revenue sharing there,” adds Intel CTO Greg Lavender.

One thing is certain, as long as our customers are looking to deploy increasingly complex solutions, hardware, software and services will need work closely together to enable seamless edge to cloud solutions … that will be the key to continued innovation.