What’s behind Intel’s $7.7 billion acquisition of security vendor McAfee? Intel chief Paul Otellini says it’s an opportunity to integrate security on a chip. But for many of the big names in tech — like Oracle and Google — diversification has been key to keeping their momentum strong while key markets cool in the downturn, and some observers see Intel taking a page out of their playbook.
That may not be a bad idea, given a changing climate for IT — think ever-increasing enterprise mobility, radical new malware and data breach threats, and a continued mandate for enterprise IT to shave costs and reduce complexity. Just like how Oracle is now a major player in the server business, and Cisco is moving to take on the rest of the data center, is it now Intel’s time to branch out? CIO Update takes a look and hears from the experts.
Intel’s bold decision to branch out into the world of security software with its surprise $7.7 billion acquisition of McAfee this week is just the latest example of a technology superpower going outside its area of expertise to respond to consumer-cum-enterprise technologies in order to survive, if not thrive, in today’s information technology landscape.
One needn’t look any farther than Google (NASDAQ: GOOG), a company that revolutionized the search and online ad market with its massive computing infrastructure and laser-sharp algorithms and then decided to extend its tentacles — to say nothing of its massive cash reserves — to mobile devices and operating systems, cloud computing, SaaS, business analytics and everything in between.