a symptom of a deeper crisis

Intel is embarking on a path of austerity. New victim: the NUCs. These mini-machines have long been underused, despite their great potential.

Against the backdrop of a tough financial year, Intel announced a colossal loss of $2.8 billion in the first quarter of 2023, a 36% drop in revenue compared to the same period the previous year. To remedy this delicate situation, the company is forced to take drastic decisions. The most recent of these is the shutdown of its Optane and NAND divisions and of the Next Unit of Compute (NUC) activity, the latter being dedicated to the design of mini PCs.

NUCs, an under-exploited showcase product

Intel’s NUCs have, since their launch, been touted as a technology showcase for the brand. However, despite their potential, they have never benefited from large-scale commercialization. In France, for example, their distribution was particularly restricted, and communication around these products was minimal. This under-exploitation is all the more regrettable since the NUCs were interesting references, not only for Intel’s partners, but also for consumers.

NUCs have played a crucial role in demonstrating Intel’s technological advancements, particularly when it comes to its processors. Two benchmark laptops were presented under the NUC brand, the NUC M15 and the NUC X15, demonstrating the brand’s ability to position itself in the laptop market as well. Additionally, NUCs have proven to be interesting gaming machines, offering a compact and high-performance alternative in an ever-growing industry.

It is undeniable that these mini PCs had great potential, but never had the opportunity to meet the success they deserved. Intel may have missed an opportunity to diversify its offering and establish a solid presence with the mainstream.

Intel NUCs were also used by OEMs to build their own machines. These NUCs provided OEMs with a solid foundation on which to add their own added value. They also allowed OEMs to offer more compact and energy-efficient solutions to their customers.

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