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Following the announcements of financial results for the quarter and the plan to layoff over 1700 employees, Advanced Micro Devices outlined three rapidly growing opportunities, which the company needs to address. AMD believes that it should focus on developing solutions for cloud servers, embedded applications and ultraportable/ultra low-power applications. Surprisingly, AMD did not note that it needs to keep its PC product line competitive as well.

“Our long-term strategy is to rebalance our business towards faster-growing segments of the market. Today, approximately 85% of our business is focused on the legacy PC portion of the market, [which is] projected to have slowing growth over the next several years. We intend to drive 40% to 50% of our portfolio to faster-growth markets where our IP is the key differentiator,” said Rory Read, chief executive officer of AMD, during a conference call with financial analysts.

Micro-Servers

There is a lot of hype about so-called micro-servers and cloud datacenter-optimized servers these days. Obviously, currently there are more talks about micro-servers/cloud servers than actual sales, but numerous companies are working on ARM-architecture chips optimized for servers. Earlier this year AMD acquired SeaMicro, a micro-server pioneer, therefore it will be clearly developing ULP server chips. Chief exec of AMD proposes to leverage the company’s “full suite of processor and graphics intellectual property, third-party processor cores and SeaMicro's supercompute fabric”. The head of AMD compares such processors to revolutionary AMD64 and Opteron, which turned AMD around almost a decade ago.

“The dense cloud market is one of the fastest-growing parts of the data center market. Our long-term path to success is in providing customers with disruptive technologies and choice, just as we did when we brought 64-bit computing to the mainstream server market with AMD 64,” said Mr. Read.

Embedded Applications

The market of embedded applications is large, yet pretty competitive. The head of AMD believes that the company has the right set of technologies – low-power x86 micro-architectures, graphics cores and other technologies – to develop custom solutions for embedded markets. He believes that the company may quadruple its embedded business in just one year time.

“We are focused on growing our share in targeted embedded markets. These include communications, industrial and gaming, which will outpace the PC industry growth for the foreseeable future. Our semi-custom APUs already have a number of confidential high-volume design wins in place. We plan for our embedded business to comprise approximately 20% of our quarterly revenue by the fourth quarter of 2013, up from 5% today,” proclaimed chief exec of AMD.

Ultra-Low Power Apps

The company, which is No. 2 supplier of microprocessors for personal computers these days, cannot ignore new form-factors like ultra-slim notebooks, tablets and so on. Therefore, AMD will continue to develop ULP accelerated processing units for inexpensive ultra-mobile devices in a bid to avoid direct competition with Intel. It is noteworthy that AMD still does not intend to develop anything for smartphones.

“We will continue to focus on driving down into the ultraportable and ultra low-power form-factors that continue to grow rapidly. APUs are ideally suited for these new products, from ultra-thins and tablets to a new breed of entry-level notebooks that will drive growth in the emerging markets,” said Rory Read.

Tags: AMD, Business, Opteron, Radeon, FX, Fusion, Bulldozer, Bobcat, Jaguar, Piledriver, Steamroller, SeaMicro

Discussion

Comments currently: 68
Discussion started: 10/19/12 09:56:25 AM
Latest comment: 10/27/12 09:14:47 PM
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1. 
Looks like a good plan to me. Focusing on the largest, fastest growing and cutting edge segments that emerging on the market is the only way AMD can move forward. With everything becoming more mobile and power efficient. Each of these segment approaches address power effieciency and mobility in kind. Going to be a tough few years for AMD for sure but, taking their wins where they can and walking away from Intel competition wise will save time energy, and money for sure.
8 4 [Posted by: veli05  | Date: 10/19/12 10:12:20 AM]
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Agreed. It's adapt or perish. And I don't think this means the end of capable x86 chips for AMD either, as Read's stated figures still put about 50% of AMD's target market as legacy PC sales.

The stated focus is on power efficient performance, just like Intel has been doing. Ivy was an exceptionally minor performance improvement over Sandy in every respect except HD 4000, but dropped TDP substantially. AMD has figured out that high power, high core count is not an efficient way to make processors. Look for them to move Steamroller and subsequent microarchitectures to smaller core counts and higher IPC (as Steamroller will be with its split decode and other front-end enhancements) to drive more task efficiency with smaller core counts and a much smaller thermal envelope.

There is a place for x86 in the tablet and ultrabook/ultrathin platforms. The newest Atom chips already compare very favorably with the best of ARM's chips, there's nothing inherently superior about RISC or ARM's approach - the product has simply targeted lower power envelopes the entire time as opposed to x86 architectures really not having to care about power efficiency until very recently. Given a couple years for Intel and AMD to catch up on power consumption improvements and process engineering, x86 procs should perform neck and neck with ARM. AMD's Jaguar and Intel's future Atom derivatives will amply demonstrate this.
6 1 [Posted by: RationalHatred  | Date: 10/19/12 01:46:18 PM]
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0 3 [Posted by: siuol11  | Date: 10/19/12 07:43:10 PM]
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DAMNs managers always babbling out with some gigantic promises about fastest growing market and usual opportunistic stuff. Its a weapon of choice, or word for fools if we put it correctly.

DAMN will not fail. But it fail his PC customers down for years. Remember overpriced A64x2 s939 before Core2 crushed onto them. They always focus themselves for "cheap servers" while breaking down that price cuts on their PC customers. I hope this shark practice will be avoided. Probably i'm fooled once again

DAMN shouldn't delay its products in favor of some of their dead-beat like they did with deliberate Piledriver delay for a whole quarter in favour of unpopular Llanos which production werent ramp up as needed when they need capacities for BUlldozers and having GF problesms on 32nm (HKMG) volume production. They did it also so mobo makers could sell their FM1 boards before they were rapidly obsoleted.

And just that could made this 15% loss of market segment instead predicted 3%, or they could even have growth. And yet they need to sale Piledrivers (the only worthy platform since BD failup) in even shorter timeframe before Steamroller based architecture came out. ... Or will they also delay them in same manner? NTM that first Bobcats were delayed in favor of HD6900 series rampup and such small fails backfire on long run.

DAMN cant have a successful quarter while intel is leading them 10:1 in sales and yet DAMN deliberately sabotage themselves with foolish decisions to delay some products. These kind of things even the most childish DAMN fans wouldnt smoke these days.
1 0 [Posted by: OmegaHuman  | Date: 10/20/12 05:10:43 PM]
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3 7 [Posted by: TA152H  | Date: 10/19/12 12:28:00 PM]
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Like many people, you don't quite grasp what is happening. AMD have already developed and taped out a x86 APU for tablets called Jaguar on 28nm node. Keyword here is APU. APU 101 - processing on the GPU is 7 times more efficient than the CPU. So if the software is coded for an APU, there are great efficiencies to be had. Java virtual machine is currently being coded by Oracle to offload processing onto the GPU of AMD's APU. AMD are developing technology in their APU (after Steamroller cira 2014) that will itself decided to offload non APU optimised code onto its GPU. The end result of all this will be a very efficient and powerful tablet. AMD does not need to use RISC designs.
10 8 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/19/12 05:36:56 PM]
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5 9 [Posted by: kailrusha  | Date: 10/19/12 05:57:07 PM]
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There is no doubt that AMD is in a precarious position financially. But it also has some very valuable IP in its APU and graphics. It hasn't been able to fully leverage its APU so far for a number of unfortunate reasons that I won't go into length here. And that is why it is bleeding. I do hold a sincere belief that by 2014 AMD will have plugged most of the leaks and it will apply the throttle fully again, like it hasn't done so since the mid 2000's. But make no mistake, the ship is pointing in the right direction. It's just listing a bit at the moment, not least due to the economic times we live in.
10 5 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/19/12 06:12:07 PM]
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2 8 [Posted by: kailrusha  | Date: 10/20/12 12:10:49 AM]
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Like many people, you're confused, but don't realize it.

If you use x86 instructions, you have to have decoding for it. Period. Even if you use GPU instructions, you still have the decoders. They take up space. They take up energy. They make the processor slower and bigger. It isn't needed for a tablet, because compatibility with Windows doesn't matter. There will be new applications for the tablet if it's successful.

x86 simply does not work on very small, very low power devices. If Intel can't do it with their superior design and manufacturing capabilities, how can AMD? They have to go another way, use an efficient instruction set, and use that to their advantage against obsolete instruction sets like x86 and ARM.

They can leverage this instruction set in phones, and in video consoles as well. x86 isn't the answer for these markets. It's not.
3 5 [Posted by: TA152H  | Date: 10/19/12 06:17:33 PM]
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I thought we were talking about compute and energy efficiency, no? I am not an expert. But I mostly understand the RISC vs x86 concept. However, I don't believe you can get massive parallelism with ARM CPUs. We just have to wait until Q1 2013 to see AMD Jaguar tablet APU benchmarks with new deeper sleep state. I am not on the inside so I can't say how it's going to match up to ARM. Usually the first benchmarks appear on Phoronix.com from engineering samples using the Open Benchmark Test Suite. But something tells me it ain't gonna be a dog. But at the moment the problem for AMD is the lack of software taking advantage of the APU. This is going take time to get traction. But Java Virtual Machine is a good starting point.
9 7 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/19/12 08:19:13 PM]
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not anymore. Remember Transmeta
2 2 [Posted by: Tukee44  | Date: 10/19/12 11:51:02 PM]
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Transmeta microprocessors can run Windows You could better say remember Cyrix/VIA, these ones even go with dedicated special functions hardware.
The point is good but not in 10yrs timeframe we wont se x86 extiction in favor of ARM. After all everything could be parallelized but you people live in clouds :D
And tell me why should we all have to live there? x86 its not the most power efficient but with reduction in complexity like DAMNs Bulldozer approach it could be more efficient but the only problem is time. DAMN hasnt resources to close that gap before ARM became good enoug to run plain programs that are on level with same that could be run on x86 and for all these efforts human time is what matters because somone must readapt people and programs that they're used to onto different arcuitecture. So parallelization is nothing to do with it.

I'm the one who thing that with proper good approach like in SSE5 vs. AVX many things could have been resolved in favor of x86 to shrink its ineffectiveness gap towards ARM.
1 1 [Posted by: OmegaHuman  | Date: 10/20/12 05:26:17 PM]
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You're confused when you think any computing architecture, well maybe someday will see your dreams of that came out to be true, doesnt have instruction set or a proper decoder for it. ARM is also based on instructions and in its pipeline there's Instruction Decoder and the efficiency came out not from the lack of decoder you hail in your preaching but form much shorter pipeline that hasnt been cumbersome with high performance and historical aka. legacy applications support as x86 architecture is.

ARM uses different lightened approach that needs much more cycles to finish same task. So 32b ARM vs. 32b x86 CPUs should be much higher clocked maybe if x86 could run on same node only 1Ghz ARM should run 6GHz to complete some twiddling task. And we know that transistors couldnt be that tweaked in favour of any architecture. To be more competitive on lighter consumption ARM uses reduced CPU usage opposite from that of x86 where SIMD came in place for better utilization (less cycles)and wider registers 64bit. All of these were now implemented in ARM to be more competitive, but this was opposite of traditional ARM approach, and to shrink performance gap on same litography because of that trannies that work similarly on both architectures if produced by same manufacturer.

Both architecture now seek further improvement in huge parallelism, but its questionable how to manage lets say 256 ARM cores vs 48 x86 cpu ones (all 64bit) just to have twice as less power consumption for same performance.

ARM is great for its purpose, but disruptive abandoning x86 is crazy. I dont say it wont be done but is deliberately crazy and you advocating some marketing hype.
2 0 [Posted by: OmegaHuman  | Date: 10/20/12 06:27:46 PM]
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AMD's biggest issue with low power is that they are still working on 28nm. They'd be leagues ahead in power efficiency if they weren't 2 process generations behind Intel.
0 1 [Posted by: KeyBoardG  | Date: 10/21/12 07:05:53 PM]
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AMD was not stupid. They fired the CEO who did not take the AMD to ARM route and let NVidia went ahead of them. Now it is too late to the party. There is no room for another ARM vendor (look at TI OMAP).
4 3 [Posted by: Tukee44  | Date: 10/19/12 11:45:21 PM]
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@Tukee - Correct. The market is too crowded now for ARM chips. Intel, AMD+Windows are now trying to make a differentiated product to ARM+Android and ARM+Apple to sell x86. The tablets are going to do similar things, but not always the same and each with different limitations. It's going to be horses for courses. Competition is good and benefits the consumer.
9 4 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/20/12 03:07:08 AM]
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3. 
The clowns of Xbit appeared very quickly today.

Well done, trolls. Very punctual.
11 4 [Posted by: RationalHatred  | Date: 10/19/12 12:47:34 PM]
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Yep - trolls, Intel fanboys and Intel shareholders - the usual suspects that I've come to despise here at Xbitlabs. They're just so boring with not an intelligent or informed point to contribute.
12 8 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/19/12 05:24:44 PM]
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2 6 [Posted by: SyntaxError_  | Date: 10/19/12 06:24:38 PM]
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It could be the very rare species of troll with three heads. Ironically, this type of troll would do better to use an AMD APU due to its superior balance of multi-tasking - one head could be trolling on Xbit, whilst the other two could be playing a game at a decent frame rate and resolution.
11 5 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/20/12 03:33:06 AM]
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4 9 [Posted by: Azazel  | Date: 10/19/12 08:19:32 PM]
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5. 
If you have to choose between 2 devices with similar performance and similar price - traditional PC which is 5-7kg box and 5-6kg monitor plus table..., and Tablet with keyboard as cover or Bluetooth keyboard which weights less than 1kg which you will be able to use anywhere definitely you'll choose Tablet PC. So within next few years traditional PCs will be fully replaced with Tablet PCs and Ultra light laptops.

If you have to choose between 2 devices with similar performance and similar price - Tablet with ARM CPU where you'll be able to use only IOS/Android/Win RT limited amount of applications which were created during last 2-3 years and Tablet with X86 CPU where you'll be able to use all the legacy software which was developed for the current X86 PC Industry than most people will choose X86.

So Intel/AMD/Microsoft still have good chances against ARM/IOS/Android. But Intel and AMD need to act very fast now and need to make SOCs (system on chip) and lower the prices for X86 chips to be competitive with ARM, otherwise ARM will replace X86 soon enough.

5 1 [Posted by: calzahe  | Date: 10/20/12 12:42:42 AM]
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Well, AMD and Intel held back as long as they could because their tablet chips will eat into their more profitable CPU and GPU products. AMD has the most to lose in the short term with the consumer shift to tablets due to their traditional servicing of the low-end PC market. And as Rory Read said, this has happened sooner than they anticipated, evidenced by the drop in the sales of their traditional products.

Rory: "We expected we'd have several years to transform the AMD business, but we must implement our transformation on a more aggressive timeline."

AMD haven't been quite caught with their pants down because they do have tablet offerings (since the beginning of 2011 in fact, but we still wait for Windows 8 to launch). But again, as Read stated, they need to ramp it up in this space because it is going to comprise 50% of their sales in the future, probably not too distant.
9 6 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/20/12 03:26:19 AM]
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6. 
time to run out for your life AMD is abandoning PC market which AMD´stands for Abandon Mommy´s Digital. now INTEL will have all CPU for itself. consumers prepare to pay INTEL several k $ for that old 486dx33 CPU because no one is selling it but INTEL. PC collectors just save that athlon x2 4200 for a little longer and sell it for millions.
2 3 [Posted by: idonotknow  | Date: 10/20/12 12:41:45 PM]
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7. 
These people who consantly insult and bash AMD for no reason at all need to be baned. Look at the Intel articles on this website, nobody posts there, especially these paid posters such as jmlxg and AvonX who are probably the same person.

Ban them.

Ban their IP.

They keep insulting EVERYBODY and act like they know EVERYTHING about CPUs and the industry and how everybody is wrong if they contradict them.

They are obviously paid to do this, nobody would be doing this for SO long. Look how long they have been doing this to just about EVERY AMD article on this website. I will contact the site owner to see what can be done about these paid idiots who can't find another job. They have done if for too long.
9 3 [Posted by: the_file  | Date: 10/21/12 09:41:29 PM]
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The more people who contact the site owner the better. Do not hesitate.
9 2 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/22/12 12:31:58 AM]
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Actually they where a good supporters of AMD before; before i joined this site. I believe they are very dismay how AMD handle their business. I cant Blame Them. eater way its useless to join any argument if we can see the negative result from AMD; i personaly dont get benefit from it.
3 0 [Posted by: xentar  | Date: 10/22/12 04:03:56 AM]
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If that was the case, they must have messed with ouija boards or dabbled in devil worshiping. Could you see how I and perhaps many others here would have some difficulty believing that? I don't think people just suddenly change into trolls when the wind blows in a different direction - it is a deep down in character and stems from narcissism.
9 2 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 10/22/12 05:57:25 AM]
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0 8 [Posted by: dudde  | Date: 10/23/12 06:17:05 PM]
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8. 
I have built exlusively AMD/ATI systems but after emailing AMD and receiving a response that indicates that the AMD PC market will be the red-headed stepchild and go the way of the Dodo I am going to stop buying AMD altogether.

I have given up on an new and hot architectures. The last market winner they had was the Athlon64, but they just kept riding that.

Every PC (many) in my house is AMD (except my Mac Laptop), but that is going to change. AMD has run out of excuses.
0 0 [Posted by: fdunn  | Date: 10/27/12 09:14:47 PM]
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