Just direct your astute attention to the following three recent acts of the legend of Semiconductor that ‘Intel’ has been, is and will possibly be :
1. Intel’s association with HP’s Thermal Ink Jet Technology based ” Multi Jet Fusion 3 D Printer ” ( faster, lower cost and high quality ) to force the pace of 3 D Printing growth quicker than anticipated even while ushering in a new age of 3 D Printing and manufacturing.
2. Intel’s recently reported talks to acquire Altera ( ALTR ) ( the deal is not concluded yet ), the programmable logic device maker to make Intel’s largest acquisition so far.
3. Intel’s fresh’-new foray in to Cyber Security operations in the light of perceived threats of Cyber attacks on the nation from external sources giving a new dimension of broad diversity to the semiconductor legend.
For Intel which has been serving as a pivot in the semiconductor industry with high intellectual property rights strength, the three aspects clearly signal its desire and move to expand beyond PC chips and servers business to a stage of rearranging and strengthening business while breaking new ground(s) simultaneously.
The microprocessor titan, Intel, set up on July 18, 1968 by Gordon Moore and Robert Noyce, has given the world a host of processors as diverse as Atom, Celeron, Pentium, Intel Core, Intel Core 2, Intel Core i3, i5, i7, … .. .
Intel has been moving beyond just processors by designing and building essential technologies that serve as foundation for the World’s Computing Devices as its new avatar.
Here’s looking attentively and carefully about the following three aspects :
– Intel’s Real Sense 3D Camera, the working system of which was shown in CES 2014 in January, helps add depth map for images. Real Sense snapshot technology allows users to manipulate photos in new ways changing the landscape of mobile photography even while bringing human like vision to PCs.
“A change in orientation from being a wholly microprocessor company.”
– In January 2014 Intel entered the smart wearable tech field with a design for wearable smart Ear buds, a smart headset, and a prototype of Intel’s smart watch. The wearable ear buds can provide biometric and fitness information. It can also monitor the Heart Rate with applications on the users’ phones while keeping track of the distance run and calories burned. This is regarded as Intel’s attempt to make its presence and relevance in mobile ecosystem.
“A change in orientation from being a wholly microprocessor company.”
– Intel’s ” True Key App ” , unveiled in the CES show in January 2015, to make passwords stronger using face, fingerprint, and even trusted devices without the bother and struggle of trouble or anxiety about passwords security.
“A change in orientation from being a wholly microprocessor company.”
In all of the above Intel developed the design, circuitry, firmware, and apps integrated where ever needed to deliver accuracy.
The key management takeaway for us now :
CEO, Brian Krzanich, awakens us with his key strategy of “Intel’s revitalization approach in market expansion with new uses while enticing new users. Increasing the breadth of operation is now the new management mantra.”
The slogan of Merryl Lynch in the late 80s, ” A breed apart ” comes to my mind although Merryl Lynch was a purely service industry while Intel is a design and manufacturer. That is how adoptive and relevant strategies are shaping and becoming today.
With a constant flow of new products from many players hitting the market now, a good benchmark to judge the effectiveness of a new venture is to get the target reach at least one fourth of sales to come from new products in the last five years. It has to be seen whether it will hold true in this case.
Will the new strategy alter the behavior of customers and their usage pattern is what every one will be looking for.
For Intel, however, this may well be the demonstration of a better move forward in this competitive circumstances and be a Gold and Graphene combined alloy.
Will Brian KrZanich be the ” Difference Creator ” for Intel ?
” Dieu avec nous “
Sunday, March 29, 2015 – 9. 39 p.m. ( IST )
Tidbit : Intel (INTC); Market cap : $ 151. 55 billion; Stock Price : $ 29. 89; P/E Ratio : 13. 33; EPS : 2. 40 as of ( 27. 3. 2015 ) .
Microsoft is now the 3rd most valuable company in terms of market cap ( $ 342 . 1 b ) with only Exxon Mobil Corp and Apple Inc dominating it strongly.
From the day IBM first approached Microsoft for a project ” Chess ” and designed the OS called MS-DOS in 1981, through Windows 1.0 (1985); Windows 2.0 (1987); Windows 3.1 (1992); Windows NT (1993); Windows 95 (1995); Windows 98 (1998); Windows XP (2001); Windows Vista (2006); Windows 7 (2009) for wireless world; Windows 8 (2012); Windows RT, Windows 8. 1 Cloud Connectivity (2013); MS’s foray in to mobile through Windows Mobile behind only the persistently impressive Apple iOS and Android; Cloud connecting and data recovery aided by the purchase of ” InMage ” a start-up – Microsoft’s journey from being a predominantly software company to a ‘devices and services’ company has been remarkable.
Microsoft’s Azure Cloud Platform; a blending of popular CRM Cloud Application platform of saleforce.com and Office/Windows; its launch last year of Surface 3 Tablets; its Unified Computing which aims to make Computers and devices to work together on the same platform are some of which signalling its evolution and transformation in a new avatar.
Microsoft earned its market dominance in IBM Compatible PC OS; Office Software suite; Acive Internet Search (Bing); Video Game industry with X Box, X 360, and X Box One; Mobile phones with Windows Phone (OS); and Surface tablets.
Satya Nadella took charge as CEO of MS on Feb 4, 2014, and the most important aspect that he engineered is the shift in MS’s strategy towards ” Devices and Services “, a clear depiction of his understanding of the changing IT landscape and customers’ information needs for developing systems in the new age.
Satya Nadella holds a steel hand in a velvet glove. He is admired as decisive but not obstinate, demanding but never harsh.
I sense the following basic management lessons in play during the short period of a year and 50 days, CEO Nadella at the helm so far. Three strategies are worth mentioning here :
1. Microsoft’s goal to attain a market share of 6.4 % by 2018 for its mobile smartphone(s). It is modest since it is part of an established mobile market and not new. Also, he contemplates making Windows Mobile free for small devices in future as a strategic move particularly when PC sales have matured and started to decline in the light of maintaining profits. Unlike the case of computers when the adoption by consumers was slow and steady, today new products are adopted either quickly or rejected fast making the whole process shorter compelling companies to come out with incremental improvements periodically. Hence, the above strategy seems to be apt.
2. CEO, Nadella’s strategy of allowing developers to use non-microsoft programming languages popular with younger coders has been a clear example of his intent to create an environment fostering entrepreneurship and permitting them to take risks in product development. During the Lenova ‘Superfish Software’ scandal of Sep 2014, Microsoft was swift to respond with “Windows Defender” program to remove the anomaly and give the customer orientation its due place. A commendable expression of ‘Customer Concern’ from a highly responsible company.
3. Microsoft is also entering the “Wearables” market with vigor. (a) It is poised to launch a ‘Smartwatch’ with a two-day battery strength (Apple’s iWatch is known to be a one-day battery) incorporating continuous Heart Rate monitoring and which can work on multiple mobile platforms as opposed to Apple’s sole iPhone compatibility. (b) Microsoft also attempts to create “trousers” that is capable of charging the customer’s phone in the pocket. A fusion of fashion and tech that has been the chief focus of the recently unveiled ‘iWatch’. This can match the customers’ need for ease and convenience.
These clearly depict the new product development process the CEO seems to be putting in place, that is ‘wearables’. It is an item enhancing the breadth and enticing the existing customers to take to their hearts. However, it needs to be tested and tried still.
Three key points to consider at this juncture :
(a) In today’s era of handling digital data in Zettabytes, IT companies can no longer be termed a specialized company with a singular focus but on the contrary a generalized one with many specialities combined just as education in 80s in India witnessed a clear distinction between a specialist and a generalist.
(b) With companies like Apple, Intel, Amazon, Netflix and Facebook garnering the centrestage with the dawn of the new millennium, Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella is possibly pushing a combination of varied product lines built away from the core products encompassing multiple industries to enhance the very genetic code of Microsoft.
(c) CEO, Satya Nadella’s success will be critical to the rejuvenation and resurrection of the old’established Microsoft in new ways to captivate the consumers.
For Microsoft this perhaps is a demonstration of a better way forward.
Will CEO, Satya Nadella, be Microsoft’s ” Difference Creator ” ?
” Dieu avec nous “
Sunday, March 22, 2015 – 7. 29 a.m. ( IST )
Tidbit : Microsoft ( MSFT : Nasdaq ) Market Cap $ 342. 1 b; Share price : $ 41. 70; P/E : 16. 82; PEG : 2. 14; EPS : 2. 48 on Feb 17, 2015.
In about 8 hrs from now, Apple will be launching its much awaited ‘iWatch’, a good for wearing, fit to be worn showy gadget combining ‘technology’ and ‘fashion’ in a special manner. This will also be a product that will fully mark CEO, Tim Cook’s concept arising from a change ( after Steve Jobs ) observed and experienced under his own steam.
Watch, traditionally a timepiece for carrying in the pocket or the wrist that can mark the passage of time, is transformed in to an ” iWatch ” that can make the user habitually on the alert carefully observing body movements, enabling minute to minute monitoring, and keeping one in a wakeful/watchful state for action.
To the obvious now : ” iWatch ” will be in 3 models; (a) Watch ( Aluminium ); (b) Watch Sport (fashionable stainless ); and (c) Watch edition ( luxe Gold ). The watch comes in two sizes – 1. 5″ and 1. 7″. It will be in six different cases/frames with different band/strap styles for each of the three models. It will drain one’s pocket by $ 349 or even more. It can be used in sync with compatible iPhone as the iOS features are fully integrated.
I sense the following basic marketing lessons that may be gleaned from this launch :
1. CEO, Tim Cook’s strategy can be defined in terms of (a) getting new uses of the brand Apple through this product; and (b) getting the existing users to use more of the brand ( those with iPhone 5 and beyond ). It is both a proactive strategy ( first mover with so many special features in a quality eco-system ) and a reactive strategy where 3 or 4 players dominate, actions of one will likely affect others although Apple is resilient to stand as a ” unique ” leader. Samsung Gear Live, LG G Watch R, Sony’s Smartwatch 2, Qualcomm’s Toq, Motorola’s MOTO 360 are others that will be compelled to accelerate their pedals. Of special interest will be Microsoft which is poised to launch its Smartwatch with a two-day battery ( Apple’s ‘iwatch’ is known to be a one-day battery ) also with continuous Heart Rate monitoring as Apple Watch, and which can work on multiple mobile platforms as opposed to Apple’s iPhone compatibility.
2. iWatch is a special attraction to the ‘ fashionable segment ‘ , health conscious consumers like the joggers and exercise minded consumers. It adds depth ( as it can be used in tandem with iPhones ) and breadth ( due to its new uses like Heart rate monitoring, calorie burnt count, setting exercise goals etc ). iPhone sales last quarter are high and so it is not expected to take sales of iWatch away from it. It will make the buyers ‘people of fashion’, showy, and refined in manners. Watch Edition specially is like a fashion jewellery !
3. iWatch is both a standalone product for some uses ( Taptic engine that alerts one of notifications with a simple ‘tap’ similar to a vibration; Measurement of Heart Rate using a custom sensor located at the back of the watch; an accelerometer that can convert steps while calculating calories burned measuring total body activity; a watchkit for for app developers to create 3rd party applications; Animated Emoji, calls and texts; for setting workout goals ); and part of the Apple family of phones for some other uses ( iTunes and Apple TV access; Siri to dictate text or ask questions; Apple pay; Maps as the guide to directions; calls and texts; etc. ). The key strategy of ‘ iWatch ‘ will be tempered by the nature of Apple’s products in combination.
A majority of reports portray Apple Inc (AAPL) to become the first $ 1 Trillion Company in less than a couple of years or so and iWatch’s contribution will be a critical factor if the prognostication is to hold true !
CEO, Tim Cook, has just not put in ideas; he has put something more to make it happen and work.
” Dieu avec nous “
Monday, March 9, 2015 – 12. 29 p.m. ( IST )
Tidbit : ” There is no joy in doing merely things which anyone else could do. But there’s great satisfaction that is mighty sweet to take, when you reach a destination that you thought you couldn’t make. “
” Who can Win the Race to Tech 2. 0 in India – PM Modi or Delhi CM Kejriwal ? Part II ” – India centric, March 2015.
The new age era of this millennium has transformed the epicenter of growth towards tech advancements/breakthroughs encompassing every sector of the economy.
We have all witnessed the PC wave of the 1990s; Internet wave of the 2000s; and witnessing the mobile wave of the 2010s. Everyone is aware that tech advances start making big impacts in niche sectors with specializations now just as Education and Health turned to a wide range of specializations within itself.
We are now sitting on the threshold of such a niche segment that has the potential to define a ‘leader’s accomplishment’ nationally, regionally, and locally in the state(s). It centers around Universal Knowledge Acquisition through Information and the tool is “ WiFi – Anytime, Anywhere, for Anyone access to Internet “.
One may live without food; One may live without family members or even a home; but one cannot live without ” Internet Access ” in this new age. It is now an essential part of our lives. Anytime, anywhere access to Internet is becoming the reality. The immense potential that it has in terms of knowledge gain, speedy communication result in higher productivity and quick decisions.
Internet access points in hotels, airports, cafes, and libraries and many other public offices are becoming common. One has only to look for a “wireless” sign and proceed with whatever one wants to do.
In cities WiFi access points need to be established enabling computers/laptops and even mobiles to get connected to it once they are fixed with compatible WiFi wireless internet access cards and the signal is strong enough to receive the connection. It will only be time when people will have internet on the move. Demand for mobile broadband internet access is almost doubling every year globally. This will be the next ‘GAME CHANGER’ awaiting to be harnessed.
The ‘Tech 2. 0 in India ‘ I mentioned in the title of the article refers to this ‘Game Changer’.
PM Modi and Delhi CM Kejriwal have shown their penchant for ‘Digital Platform Service’ and easy access to WiFi with internet on the go.
This technology and the accompanying benefits fit the “Three” criteria I enumerated in the beginning of my article ( Part I ) to credit oneself with ” SIGNATURE ACCOMPLISHMENT “. Successful implementation, however, is not without hurdles.
Will PM Modi or Delhi CM Kejriwal go the whole hog to get their names etched in the history of India alongside others mentioned earlier.
Anyone who scores high on this Tech 2. 0 will be next only to our late PM Rajiv Gandhi’s accomplishment of his term marked by ushering in of the Computer Revolution – Tech 1. 0 – along with necessary infrastructure in the tech front.
“Signature Accomplishment” is a defining characteristic of world leaders marking their terms with ‘crown jewels’ in history.
(a) US President, Barack Obama’s “Affordable Health Care “; (b) Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel’s ( Most powerful woman in the world, Forbes May 28, 2014 ) ” Management of Financial Crisis at European and International Level “; (c) Australian PM, Tony Abbot’s efforts to make ” Lives of women easier by Tax structure adjustments “; (d) UK PM, David Cameron’s ” Marriage Equality ( LGBT Equality ) ” are some worthy of mention in this context. David Cameron has even made a case for an Indian origin Individual to be the UK PM in the foreseeable future !
Both PM Modi and Delhi CM Kejriwal have time, power, and resources on hand to accomplish.
Who will win the race and whether they will make a sincere and serious attempt is what will be crossing the minds of eager believers. If freebies and other routine stuff take centerstage and principles get damned they may lose out on their track record and never will they be satisfied with themselves.
” Dieu avec nous “
Wednesday, March 4, 2015 – 10. 39 p.m. ( IST )
Tidbit : ” Most of those who would like to move mountains don’t like to practice on the little hills.”
” Who Can Win the Race to Tech 2. 0 in India – PM Modi or Delhi CM Kejriwal ? Part I ” – India centric – March , 2015.15
Empowerment of the marginalized; Upliftment of the downtrodden; Women Power; Easy availability of essentials for living; Education for all; Health and Sanitation for all; constitute the essence of substance bandied about day in and day out by every leader who counts or not. These are their primary duties to the people who elected them.
A leader’s contribution, however, at the end of his/her term in power is more likely to be assessed by his/her ” Signature Accomplishment ” during the period than any other.
I define ” Signature Accomplishment ” as that action : (a) which can impact and benefit a large section of people of a country; and/or (b) which can be replicated and reverberated for guidance in similar places elsewhere in the region/world ; and/or (c) which can make a nation stand tall and proud amidst all nations in the world stage.
Let’s view the leaders of India through this prism now :
The following six ‘Signature Accomplishments’ of the six leaders are worthy of being recalled here :
1. Late Jawaharlal Nehru ( India’s First PM – 15 Aug 1947 to 27 May 1964 ) guided India through INDUSTRIALIZATION for economic self-sufficiency – specially concentrating on Steel Mills and Dams – utilising the Technology imported from both Western and eastern Blocks. A game changer for ‘Growth’ was his ” Signature Accomplishment “.
2. Late Smt Indira Gandhi’s ( India’s Fourth PM – Jan 19, 1966 to Mar 24, 1977 and Jan 14, 1980 to Oct 31, 1984 ) Pokhran Nuclear Explosion in 1974 put India on the world nuclear map. A milestone in India’s Nuclear History India earned the status of the world’s youngest nuclear power. A Game changer in the ” nuclear security ” front was her ” Signature Accomplishment “.
3. Late Rajiv Gandhi ( India’s Seventh PM – 31 Oct 1984 to 2 Dec 1989 ), the Chief Architect of Modern India, ushered in the ‘Computer Revolution’ in India. A visionary with a farsighted leadership, he dreamt of making India a leader in 21st Century. A Game changer in ‘ Technology ‘ front was his ” Signature Accomplishment “.
4. Late P V Narasimha Rao ( India’s 10th PM – 21 Jun 1991 to 16 May 1996 ), popularly called the “Father of India’s Economic Reforms” launched the free market economy in India and played a stellar role to give shape to the impact of the New World Economy. It took the toddler that India has been to move its first step, speak its first words, and to charm others with its sweet smile. It is significant to note that Dr Man Mohan Singh, then Finance Minister and later PM spearheaded the reforms. A game changer in ‘ India’s Economic Reforms ‘ was his ” Signature Accomplishment “.
5. Sri Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s ( India’s Eleventh PM – 19 Mar 1998 to 19 May 2004 ) ‘ Golden Quadrilateral ‘ , a highway network connecting many of the major industrial, agricultural, and cultural centers of India _ Connecting Delhi, mumbai, Calcutta, and Chennai and hence the name Quadrilateral – setting the tone for development when ‘infrastructure’ was touted as the ‘buzzword’. Significantly, A B Vajpayee has been the first non-Congress PM who completed a full term. A Game changer in infrastructure the ‘Golden Quadrilateral’ was his ” Signature Accomplishment “.
6. Dr Man Mohan Singh’s ( India’s Fourteenth PM – 20 May 2004 to 25 May 2014 ) Historic ‘ Civil Nuclear Agreement ‘ with U.S.A. has been the harbinger to our future energy independence and energy security. He is also affectionately called the Deng Xiapong of India. A game changer in ‘energy security’, the Civil Nuclear Agreement was his ” Signature Accomplishment “.
All the above left their footprints in Gold and gave India’s image a moonshot and redefined leadership in a true sense. Each of these accomplishments came at a time when India had a “thought leader” at the helm with the ability to see the big picture.
None of the above, however, are purely original and every accomplishment had a precedent elsewhere in the world for use and application as the guiding light with tweaks in approaches that suited our culture and population.
That Congress held power during 5 out of the 6 game changing accomplishments was not just a coincidence but an expression of peoples’ confidence.
” Dieu avec nous “
Wednesday, March 4, 2015 – 7. 39 p.m. ( IST )
Tidbit : ” Men who harness their hearts to mighty tasks often see their dreams become realities”. – Silver Lining
Just 18 days in to the five year reigning period of power in Delhi as CM, a crisis of a sort stares in the face of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) calling for a swift action.
A leaked letter expressing serious concern about the style of functioning of AAP’s Delhi CM, Arvind Kejriwal, from Prashant Bhushan with supporting statement from Yogender Yadav – both founding members of AAP – has been the causal factor.
Yogender Yadav is full of ‘ capacites intellectuelles ‘ and Prashant Bhushan is a reputed ‘ homme de loi ‘ . Both have contributed significantly and effectively to the party in the early stages and evoke great expectations that they will do so for the party in future too.
The duo, however, seems to have adopted the unexpected now with their strong concern(s).
There could only be two possibilities for the show.
First, the leaked letter and contents could be a ” positive complaining ” which calls for a quick solution before denting the image of the party any further. Only that it should not be allowed to get toxic and destroy the very fabric of the cohesion that the party needs at this juncture. The solution also should find a way for people to bond again. There can be no wandering or wavering minds losing focus and the main agenda of governance. The party needs to push its way through all hurdles in the process even if it finally turns out to be papering over mere cracks.
Second, the number one gripe of the duo, if it is gripe really, may well be that they’re not getting visible and powerful enough in the party. Making oneself visible in politics is the hardest part. Many people get in the way of your functioning in many different ways. In particular for a party that has achieved stupendous success without leaders of significant realpolitic experiences, the inertia, complexity and resistance can be so strong as to put spokes in the wheels of progress both from within and from outside. The present crisis is from within calling for (un)necessary discussions pontificating the pros and cons of a DECISION. The Executive Committee is to deliberate tomorrow on this.
Arvind Kejriwal took the rap for his hasty and imprudent resignation as CM of Delhi on Feb 14, 2014, after holding the fort for 49 days, during the election meetings this time and resoundingly managed to beat the rap while standing the racket firmly.
Arvind Kejriwal gained mass appeal as he rode on the crest of an anti-corruption wave born out of Anna Hazare’s movement. Yogender Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, for all their worth cannot match Kejriwal or for that matter his Deputy Manish Sisodia on this score. They are, nevertheless, his trusted aides and swift action is needed for a peaceful resolution.
Having been allowed a second bite at the CM cherry, it is time for AAP to put their hands to the plough and not for ploughing the sand. Kejriwal also cannot afford to put a square peg in a round hole while entertaining hopes of receiving a good score card of overall performance.
Management cognoscenti believe that ‘authoritarian’ mode of functioning has its pluses in administration. Giving the reign to many may not be needed now.
– When decisions have to be made quickly, the leader can do effectively without elaborate consultation(s).
– The leader may well keep a close watch on people under him which increases the prospect of keeping them on their toes boosting the positive result of improved productivity and speed of action.
– The leader can have total control over party affairs relieving him of unwanted stress so as to avoid the need to seek support from outside for every issue.
The above are particularly true for a neophyte as the present case is.
If Kejriwal displays good understanding of followers and their needs; entertains a need for for the party’s achievement; can look upon himself as a self-assured and self-confident individual; can be seen as assertive and not aggressive; can be seen as a good decision-maker – he ought to be a good leader and criticisms do not hold much water.
Kejriwal, for his part, also needs to keep a tight reign on courses of distractions and even may need to make them read the riot act if the criticism proves to be hollow in the Executive Committee.
A fledgling party with no tall political leaders to boast of, too many centers or powers of action will rather arouse more confusion and poor understanding in the minds of the common man than listening to a single, sound, and solid view from ‘a person’ for their benefits. Responsibility and accountability wins.
” Best course for the leader is to hang on the lips of members, cross the Rubicon firmly and irrevocably before anyone attempts to rush his fences on you. “
” It is not ‘one-centric’ or ‘we-centric’ but ‘ people-centric ‘ that matters most. “
” Dieu avec nous “
Tuesday, March 3, 2015 – 10. 59 p.m.
Tidbit : ” What better than to give an account and insight with analysis of the latest development in any field of human endeavor ! “