Intel has conceded the digital TV market to ARM, closing its Digital Home Group and abandoning attempts to push its low-power x86 Atom chips into the market.
The Digital Home Group represented one of Intel's many attempts to attack British chip design giant ARM on its home turf: 'smart' TVs and set-top boxes. After some initial wins - including convincing Google to use the Atom CE (Consumer Electronics) chips for first-generation Google TV set-top boxes - sales stagnated, and Intel has finally thrown in the towel.
According to details obtained by AnandTech, the group's closure won't result in any job losses. Instead, Intel is looking to fold employees back into the smartphone and tablet arms - another area where Intel is hoping to gain ground for Atom over the plethora of ARM licensees currently dominating the market.
Intel also won't be abandoning the Atom CE line altogether: while its focus on consumer-oriented devices is over, the company is believed to be continuing to provide its technologies to set-top box manufacturers for media processing.
The news that Intel is concentrating its efforts elsewhere will come as a mixed blessing for ARM and its many customers: while it means that it retains control of the growing 'smart' TV market, it also means that Intel is able to better concentrate its not-inconsiderable expertise and finances on a far more profitable area: smartphones and tablets.