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Intel is investing more than $24 million in software companies that touch on areas that the giant chip maker is particularly interested in, including cloud computing.

In all, Intel Capital–the vendor’s investment arm–will spread the money among seven software makers.

The investments, announced Sept. 8, highlights Intel’s ongoing interest in building out its software capabilities, and importance of tightly integrating software into its hardware platforms.

"The best computing experiences unite leading-edge hardware with amazing software," Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital and Intel executive vice president, said in a statement. "These investments in best-of-breed software vendors play an integral part in Intel’s software strategy by fueling the creation of compelling and unique user experiences across devices. They also demonstrate our stage-agnostic approach to investing in support of this ecosystem."

Intel over the past few years has been aggressive in building out its software capabilities in a number of areas, including security, mobility, embedded computing and cloud services. For example, Intel last year bought security software vendor McAfee of $7.6 billion, a move designed to enable the chip maker to integrate greater security capabilities into its processors. Intel officials said greater security will become increasingly important as they grow the company’s presence in mobile devices.

In March, Intel bought SYSDsoft, which makes wireless networking software, particularly in the area of 4G LTE (long-term evolution) connectivity. The move was made as Intel looks to drive its technology into the lucrative and highly competitive smartphone and tablet markets, which currently is dominated by chip designs by ARM Holdings and its OEM partners, including Qualcomm and Nvidia.

To read the original eWeek article, click here: Intel Invests $24 Million in Software Companies