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Intel: It’s time to ‘retire’ the IDF developers conference

Intel Intel CEO Brian Krzanich and Terry Myerson, Microsoft executive vice president, discuss new collaborations involving virtual reality software and hardware between Intel and Microsoft during Krzanich’s keynote at the 2016 Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco on Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016. On Monday, Intel said it would no longer hold the IDF gathering.

SANTA CLARA — The Intel faithful won’t be gathering together in the summer any more.

Intel said Monday it was pulling the plug on the Intel Developer Forum, better known as IDF, which has recently been held annually at San Francisco’s Moscone Center. Officially, Intel said in a statement on its website that it would “retire the IDF program moving forward.”

In an effort to placate potential IDF attendees who may have been planning on going to this year’s gathering, Intel said that the company “has a number of resources available on, including a Resource and Design Center with documentation, software, and tools for designers, engineers, and developers.”

Agnes Kwan, an Intel spokeswoman, said IDF wasn’t canceled because of a drop in the conference’s popularity. Last year’s IDF had more than 6,000 attendees, but Kwan said putting IDF to rest comes as Intel Chief Executive Brian Krzanich has pushed the company into areas beyond its longtime core PC business.

“Our CEO has been talking about Intel no longer being a PC-centric company, but a data-centric one,” Kwan said. “We are in areas like AI (artificial intelligence), VR (virtual reality) and IOT (intenet of things). Wherever there is data, you will see us there.”

Intel’s canceling of IDF, while a surprise to many, comes as the company has pulled back from some of its traditional conference sponsorships.

Since last year, Intel has said it wouldn’t hold its 2017 IDF event in China, and in February, the company dropped its support for the International Science and Engineering Fair. Intel also said it would no longer lend its name to the national Science Talent Search, one of the country’s biggest programs for encouraging high school students to get involved in science-based education.

“We have a new audience that validates our portfolio,” Kwan said. “We are looking into more and different events to get our message across such as industry conferences.”

Intel is the second big-name Bay Area tech company to turn the lights off on its annual San Francisco meeting of developers.

In February, Apple said it was dumping the Moscone Center, which had been home to its yearly Worldwide Developers Conference since 2003, in favor of the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, which lasted hosted Apple’s developers gathering in 2002.