There is money to be made from the Internet, according to Intel's Net chief Frank Gill, but serious profits for suppliers are a long term prospect.
Gill, executive vice president for Intel?s Internet division, said working out how to make these profits is proving more difficult than expected. In an address to Internet World in Los Angeles, Gill argued that, while there are innovative technologies enabled by the Internet, in the short term they are unlikely to provide end users with cost savings or suppliers with serious profits.
"Finding the pot of gold has been elusive," he admitted. "The advent of the Web set off an explosion of new people logging on to the Net, but capturing that pot of gold is all about business."
To illustrate his point, Gill demonstrated a home banking system from Wells Fargo Online, but later said that he had used ISDN lines and other specialised networking technology out of reach of the average user.
But he was predictably enthusiastic about the potential of business multimeda applications. The previous day Intel had unveiled an alliance with Cisco and Microsoft - called Networked Multimedia Connection - to deliver multimedia applications over the Net (see separate story).
The alliance is targeting business users building corporate Intranets rather than the consumer market, into which Intel has focused most of its previous multimedia investment.
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