It's the economies, stupid
Intel has yet to deliver its first significant win in this arena. ARM owns the space.
Or rather, it doesn't. And that's its great strength.
Adopting a licensing business model has given ARM two dimensions of innovation - its own relentless drive to deliver processing throughput and power efficiency, and its licensors' packaging of that processor technology directly into single chip systems and package-on-package combinations.
That produces cost and time-to-market advantages, and fosters competition that benefits OEMs, who have confidence in the entire ecosystem, in which ARM enables the shots rather than calling them. The diseconomies facing OEMs thinking about adopting Intel are substantial.
That's not to say that ARM's position is impregnable. Intel's business model gives it many dollars per chip sold, where ARM collects just a few cents. It has breathtaking cash generation, deriving from the markets it dominates and the gross margin position it harvests. That war chest enables all kinds of attacks on the market it must succeed in if it's to maintain anything like its present position as the world goes mobile.
They must succeed. But that doesn't mean they will. And they are in the unenviable position of seeing both their star weapon - the wealth of software written first for x86 - degrading so unexpectedly rapidly, and of finding themselves facing a new wave of competition in Windows and server markets.
Half a league, half a league, half a league onward. It's a magnificent warhorse, and you have to admire the cavalry charge, but just look at the heavy artillery on every side.