Though we first spotted evidence of this a short time ago with Auzentech announcing a new sound card based off their X-Fi audio processor, Creative have informed the lads at VR-Zone that they plan to allow the selling of both their own sound cards and audio chips to third party companies.
During VR-Zone's discussion with some X-Fi guys at Creative, they also learned that Creative are intending to eventually release a native PCIe variant of their X-Fi soundcard.
A week or so ago we learned that they would definitely be unveiling a PCIe based offering in the very near future, but this first-gen variant will in fact rely on a PCI to PCIe bridge chip, inferior in the sense that it could inflict performance degradation.
There's also some other interesting things said by the Creative lads in regards to their future plans. You can read up on the full story here.
VR-Zone has a good opportunity to talk to a bunch of X-Fi guys over at Creative Technology recently and we managed to find out a little more about their direction and upcoming plans. We learned that Creative will continue to focus on their X-Fi technology and is in fact very open to licensing of their technology. There is a shift from sales of complete solutions to chipset solutions. One fine example is the licensing of their X-Fi technology and sale of the X-Fi sound chips to Auzentech where they are going to release the Prelude 7.1 into the market soon.