Texas Instruments to move away from mobile chips for consumer devices

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Well, here’s a bit of news that was completely unexpected this week: Texas Instruments, the maker of the popular OMAP series of mobile processors, has announced that it’s no longer interested in pursuing that area of business.

The announcement came as a surprise to just about everyone – except of course to Texas Instruments itself. Here’s the official statement from the company, straight from TI vice president of embedded processing Greg Delagi: “”We believe that opportunity is less attractive as we go forward.”

TI must have been planning this for a while, as it is completely certain that it will have a greater financial return through embedded processing – in things like automobiles – than it would through its current mobile processor business. According to the company, embedded processing will “generate a more stable, profitable long-term business,” even though it will go at a much slower pace.

Unfortunately, that means there will be one less player in the mobile chipset business – a business that is currently dominated (now) by Qualcomm, Apple, and Samsung.

I’ve never had a problem with TI’s great OMAP processors, and I’m incredibly sad to see the company leave the mobile chipset business. What are your thoughts?

[Reuters]
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Calob Horton

Calob Horton is an associate editor at Pocketables. He loves all technology, no matter which company it comes from. This unbiased view of the tech world allows him to choose the products that best fit his personal needs and tastes: a Microsoft Surface Pro, a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and a third-gen iPad.Google+ | Twitter | More posts by Calob | Subscribe to Calob's posts

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6 thoughts on “Texas Instruments to move away from mobile chips for consumer devices

  • Avatar of Abraham
    September 27, 2012 at 3:14 am
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    It is funny to me, because up to a few months ago, I did not know that Texas Instruments did anything else apart from graphing calculators.

    I remember several years ago in High School I would use their TI-89 Titanium for AP Statistics.

    And well back on topic, hopefully their move proves resourceful and the company grows.

    Reply
  • Avatar of overclock
    September 27, 2012 at 6:05 am
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    There’s a lot of costs involved with R&D, manufacture, marketing, etc. Perhaps TI isn’t getting the return on their OMAP chips to continue.

    It was a junior engineer at TI that invented the integrated circut. Jack Kilby is an unknown to the vast majority but his invention is used everyday by billions. He started at TI right before the company shut down. But he didn’t have enough vacation or seniority to take the time off so he stayed and played. Good thing he did because he changed the world, not Apple. Read up on him on TI’s website:
    http://www.ti.com/corp/docs/company/history/tihistory_subpage2.shtml

    A heavy hitter leaving the market will hurt competition and innovation. Considering all the factors of the global economy, current competition, costs, return on investment, I can see why TI would throw in the towel on mobile processors.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Nagaraj
    September 27, 2012 at 6:05 am
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    well, i haven’t really used a phone with a texas chipset so i can’t vouch for it. But what i do think is that one less player means one less competitor, and that is bad for us consumers!

    Reply
    • Avatar of D. Stroya
      September 27, 2012 at 6:57 am
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      I would have to agree…

      Reply
  • Avatar of Doug Culp
    September 27, 2012 at 3:17 pm
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    Honestly, I didn’t know they were involved. Every time I think of them, I remember playing Diamonds or Pimp Quest on a TI-83. Good times, wasting time in high school.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Jeff
    September 27, 2012 at 7:43 pm
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    I remember TI digital watches in 1975. The digital world has exploded since then and the cost of keeping competitive in the rapidly mushrooming phone/tablet market is probably extreme.

    TI is probably hoping to get and maintain a larger market share in the automobile market while others are concentrating on handhelds. The transportation sector is demanding more and more capable chips almost every day, as more aspects become computerized. The driverless cars that are essentially around the corner and are currently under development will need huge processing power. The folks at TI must see the writing on the wall. This is their chance to focus on getting in on the ground floor of this beginning boom.

    Reply

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