One of the best known examples of partnerships in recent years is the one between Microsoft and Intel (dubbed Wintel). Both companies rode the evolutionary trend in computing (Moore's Law) by introducing hardware-software combination in a coordinated fashion. As Intel designed its next generation chip, Microsoft released next version of its operating system. This trend had to stop sometime, somewhere. Well.. it looks like it has.
NY Times is reporting that an internal analysis within Intel has concluded that Intel may not upgrade all their 80,000 computers to Vista OS! Specifically,
the company made its decision after a lengthy analysis by its internal technology staff of the costs and potential benefits of moving to Windows Vista.One of the tricky aspects of strategies in a network-era is that one partner does not carry out such analysis if the outcome is likely to significantly affect the performance and position of its tightly-linked allies. Intel's internal analysis to assess cost-benefit of Vista is not like analysis carried out by other big corporations or by so-called third party analysis from Gartner and Forrester.
Managing partnerships in a network-ear calls for understanding mutual-dependence and coordinating product launches. Unilateral decisions signal more arms-length relationship and this move--if it indeed is followed through--signals that Intel and Microsoft are drifting away from each other.