Intel Capital has invested ₹1894.5 crore ($253.5 million) in Mukesh Ambani’s Jio Platforms for a 0.39% stake.
Most of Intel Capital’s investments in the past have focussed on artificial intelligence (AI), including edge computing, cloud technology and network transformation — going from 4G to 5G.
Intel’s expertise in consumer electronics could also come in handy for the telecom giant if it forays into the world of laptops.
Mukesh Ambani has made yet another investment and this time it is the investment arm of global tech and semiconductor major Intel Corporation – Intel Capital. Intel Capital has invested ₹ 1894.5 crore ($ 253.5 million) for a 0.39% stake in Jio.
“This step is more strategic rather than just an investment. “This is more than a strategy strategy,” Counterpoint analyst Tushar Pathak quoted Business Insider as saying.
Experts believe that Intel’s investment in Jio could help Reliance in the possible introduction of three core verticals – Artificial Intelligence, 5G Push and Jio Laptops.
Reliance also said in a statement that “Intel Capital invests globally in innovative companies with a focus on disruptive technology areas such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence and 5G – where Jio also innovates for growth and Is investing. “
A JIO Laptop Soon?
Intel’s expertise in consumer electronics may also work for the telecom giant. Jio had already marketed its market in the consumer electronics segment with mobile electronics and a partnership with Intel could help mark its debut in another segment — laptops where Intel has a majority market share.
“Intel Jio launch can help with computing devices (laptops and tablets) and accessories like cameras. Please note that Jio has already become a smart city vendor aggressively pursuing its ambitions, with cameras being an important question. In addition, the company has already launched IoT cameras for homes for both smart TV and surveillance purposes.
However, the consumer side of things will not be the first step for Jio, analysts believe. “Their top priority will be AI, they will not look at the consumer side of things. This will be more in terms of the reader’s Industrial Internet of Things (IoT) and other enterprise aspects.
The 5G dream
Reliance has been gunning for 5G and Ambani has plans to test Reliance Jio’s own 5G network in-house—if it gets the requisite approval from the department of Telecommunications (DoT).
According to Pathak, Intel’s impetus is to keep an eye on companies which have the ability to make the technological shift, something that only happens once every decade. In 2020, it’s the shift to 5G.
A Jio executive wrote on LinkedIn that the Jio and Intel’s leadership in ORAN and OpenRan will benefit the growth and transformatkion of next-generation networks. ORAN and OpenRan are open source 5G software. “Intel has advanced Edge computing offerings across processors, analytics, AI and the access to this technology can help Jio Platforms engineering teams make significant pace with their 5G technology and IoT ecosystem rollouts,” said a report by Greyhound research.
Using Intel’s AI expertise to manage data over 500 million subscribers
Bernstein’s report from June estimated that Jio would capture nearly half the Indian market by 2025 – calling the company the ‘new king of Indian telecommunications’. It forecasts that Jio’s subscriber base will jump from its current standing at 388 million subscribers to cross 500 million by 2023 to hit 609 million by 2025.
“If that happens, it’s a massive amount of data on a particular platform. That is what is exciting these investors, especially someone like Intel Capital,” said Pathak.
Most of Intel Capital’s investments in the past have focussed on artificial intelligence (AI), including edge computing, could technology and network transformation – going from 4G to 5G.
“When 500 million subscribers will interact and create a massive database, the role of AI is going to be huge for a company like Jio. A lot of their users will have a cross-platform approach,” Pathak noted.