Intel’s Earnings Rise

by Jeff Wiener on October 13, 2010

Reporting their third quarter earnings on Tuesday, Intel revealed some good news about the possibilities for a very encouraging holiday season.

The company reported third quarter earnings of $2.96 billion, marking a 59% increase over the same period a year prior. Revenue rose 18% and analysts are predicting even better news for the winter shopping season. With Intel’s third quarter fall results topping out the predictions from the industry watchers, it’s possible that winter’s news could be even better.

Demand is the name of the game for Intel. The world’s biggest microprocessor maker proved many an anxious analyst wrong after worrying predictions were made about a stall in PC sales. The winter period, it was expected, would mirror the disappointing sales of the fall period. But as Intel rolled out its announcement on Tuesday, the frowns turned upside down and hope was free to run wild in the market again.

Everyone who’s anyone keeps at least one eye on what Intel is doing. The company has chips inside over 80% of the world’s top computer brands, so they’re an unavoidable market force. Because of this, the sales of Intel’s products can serve as indicators as to the sales of the products carrying, of course, Intel’s products. In other words, if lots of chips are moving out the door it stands to reason that lots of computers could be as well.

Intel is the first major tech company to report on its third quarter, so Wall Street is prepping for the rest as we speak. Other computer companies may have good news as well, especially if this is any indication, and that could mean that the holiday shopping rush could be a good one this year.

Many analysts think that the computer industry is undergoing some troubled times, what with the economy and with the onset of smart phones. But it looks like Intel’s products are still in demand around the world after all, even as Intel-free tablets like the iPad start flexing market muscle in a big way.

As for the future, it’s anybody’s guess. There are two schools of thought at the moment about where tablets and smart phones will fit in to the PC equation. The first says that these products will serve as accompaniments to existing PCs, as users will purchase these products to supplement their PC and notebook experiences. The other school of thought is more severe and perhaps more ambitious in its suggestion that laptop sales and PC sales will fizzle out as people move into tablets entirely.

In any event, it looks like Intel’s got a lot to celebrate for the time being. If it can evolve as a company and begin to produce a wider line of products for the “new era” in tech, it should continue to enjoy these sorts of results. If not, the future is anybody’s guess.

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