In recent years, Intel kinda lost its mojo. Manufacturing used to be one of the company's prides but at the moment it's becoming one of the firm's liabilities. The chip giant is still struggling with its 10nm process and various efforts to break into new markets haven't been successful.
The latest division to end up on the chopping block is the New Devices Group. Five years ago, CEO Bryan Krzanich envisioned Intel chips inside millions of emerging devices, but that never materialized. As a result, Intel is now shutting down its efforts to create wearable devices, which included smartwatches, health/fitness monitors, smart/AR glasses, etc.
Over the five-year history of NDG, Intel made two significant acquisitions to bring necessary expertise to the group: the company took over Basis (a maker of fitness watches) in 2014 and Recon (a maker of wearable heads-up displays) in 2015. Most recently, Intel’s NDG showcased their Vaunt (aka Superlight) smart glasses that looked like “normal” glasses, yet used laser beams to project information to retina justifying their “smart” moniker. While NDG had cutting edge technologies, the group has never managed to produce a truly popular product. Moreover, when problems with one of their Basis smart watches showed up on a limited number of devices, Intel preferred to stop their sales and refund their costs to the customers rather than fix the problems and replace faulty units.
Intel continues to research smart devices via its New Technology Group, as well as other divisions.