CEO Pat Gelsinger told Reuters on Monday that Intel was in talks with companies developing chips for automakers about making those chips in its factories. Intel((INTC) could produce the chips in six to nine months, he said.
This increased supply would be of great help to automakers facing production delays, downtime, and limited inventory from the scarcity of computer chips. Gelsinger said Intel will try to provide quick relief, including to auto companies suffering from the shortage Ford Motor Co.((FPRC) and General Motors((GM)according to Reuters. An Intel spokesman confirmed the report to CNN Business.
“We hope that some of these issues can be fixed without requiring a three or four year factory build, but instead having six months of certifying new products for some of our existing processes,” Gelsinger told Reuters, adding that Intel did already started “engagements” with some important chip suppliers, although he did not name them.
Gelsinger’s comments follow a virtual gathering of executives from companies that manufacture and rely on semiconductor technology convened by the White House on Monday. The Biden administration called the meetingDiscussing the shortage of chips and the need to shore up the American semiconductor supply chain. Participants also included Dell Technologies((DELL) CEO Michael Dell, Google((Googl google) CEO Sundar Pichai, General Motors CEO Mary Barra, micron((MICR) CEO Sanjay Mehrotra and others.
Speaking at the summit, President Joe Biden said there is bipartisan support for strengthening domestic semiconductor manufacturing, an effort that is part of his larger infrastructure investment plan. Currently, state-of-the-art microchip manufacturers who have critical defense applications and will fuel key next generation technologies rely heavily on foreign manufacturing, mainly from Taiwan, South Korea and China
US officials are increasingly concerned about centering manufacturing for this critical industry in a region where US rival China, vying for technological dominance, has so much influence. These concerns have heightened in the face of the recent chip shortage.
“China and the rest of the world aren’t waiting, and there’s no reason Americans should wait,” Biden said. “We’re aggressively investing in areas like semiconductors and batteries – that’s what they and others are doing, and so are we.”
Biden emphasized the importance of “expanding American supply chains so that we are never at the mercy of another country” for such critical industries as semiconductors.
Intel has been fighting for a role in assisting US officials in this effort since at least last spring.
After a recent strategic overhaul by new CEO Gelsinger, the company may be particularly well positioned for this: Intel announced last month it would invest $ 20 billion
in two new US chipmakers. There are also plans to open a new business unit called Intel Foundry Services, dedicated to manufacturing chips developed by other semiconductor companies, and possibly some companies from Asian chipmakers such as Samsung((SSNLF)
and the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company((TSM)
“We are grateful for the opportunity to share with the President and his team our perspective on the urgent need to invest in semiconductor manufacturing, research and development, education and jobs here in the US,” said Gelsinger in one Statement to CNN Business following Monday’s White House Summit.
“It is clear that there is widespread bipartisan and cross-industry recognition that semiconductor manufacturing is an integral part of our national infrastructure that needs to be included in the US employment plan,” he said.
In addition to growing US semiconductor manufacturing, Intel Foundry Services will generate new revenue for the company as other core areas of its business become increasingly threatened by competitors.
On Monday, Nvidia added to that pressure by announcing plans to launch its first central processing unit (CPU) chips for servers – a move it will put in direct competition with Intel in the critical data center market. Intel’s stock fell more than 4% after the news Nvidia((NVDA) Stocks were up nearly 6%.
Nvidia previously focused on graphics processors (GPUs) and data processing units (DPUs) used in data centers alongside x86 CPUs from Intel. modern micro devices((AMD)
and other. However, systems that use Nvidia’s new CPU called Grace in conjunction with their GPUs will be ten times
faster than systems based on x86 CPUs, according to the company.
The new chips are based on Arm Ltd technology, which is also used by the technology Apple((AAPL) and others threatening the dominance of Intel x86 chips in the PC market.
“Overall, Nvidia is emerging as an excellent and direct competitor to Intel,” said Wayne Lam, CCS Insight’s senior director of research, in an email comment. “It’s going to be another x86 versus ARM war, but on the battlefield of high-performance computing.”