InfoWorld reports that Intel will close its research laboratory in Cambridge, England, before the end of this year.
It’s yet another sign that Intel’s focus and resources are being placed practical, tactical, near-term objectives, such as revenue realization and profitability, rather than on long-term strategic research initiatives.
The Cambridge lab is one of four that Intel runs in collaboration with universities to work on long-term projects, and the only such facility outside the U.S. Researchers in Cambridge worked on wireless and optical-networking projects and on technology related to distributed applications.
Intel’s three other university labs are at the University of California at Berkeley, Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and the University of Washington in Seattle. It is not known whether any of those research facilities are in danger of being shut down as part of Intel’s cost-cutting and restructuring zeal.
Given Intel’s struggles in recent years and its suddenly heated competitive battle against AMD in the microprocessor market, it is understandable that the company would want to get its business priorities in order.
Still, Intel has to be careful not to go too far in cutting back on forward-looking research initiatives. Some of those projects might have the potential to give Intel technologies that would help it regain a competitive edge against AMD.