ATI, graphics business unit of Advanced Micro Devices, confirmed that it is on-track to launch its first lineup of DirectX 11 graphics processing units (GPUs) “in the back half of the year” and that the product family will ramp up very quickly in the channel market. In addition, AMD promised DirectX 11 graphics chips for mobile computers to arrive in the first half of 2010.
“What I do expect to be an opportunity for AMD in the second half of the year is our introduction of DirectX 11-compatible products, in effect, a new product stack. We expect to be out ahead of our competition and we think that it will have a positive effect on our mix and hence our ASPs in the back half of the year,” said Dirk Meyer, chief executive officer of Advanced Micro Devices.
ATI demonstrated its first DirectX 11 graphics processors at Computex Taipei 2009 in early June, however, it did not outline any actual timeframes for introduction. This time the company revealed several important things: there will be a lineup of DX11-compatible products unveiled this year, ATI’s graphics cards partners will ramp up production of appropriate graphics cards quickly and that mobile DirectX 11-class solutions will be available in the first half of 2010.
“I expect that to be a very quick ramp in the desktop AIB channel, as we refer to it, and expect DirectX 11 to start to showing up in notebooks more like in the first half of next year,” said Mr. Meyer.
If AMD’s ATI unit really manages to be the first company to announce DirectX 11 GPUs, it will be able to enjoy rather high profit margins due to the lack of competition from Nvidia Corp. or Intel Corp.
“The new DirectX 11 stack I referenced will be in 40nm, and clearly that will give us an opportunity to kind of regain the high ground even more substantially and hence improve our mix in ASP and hence margins,” the head of AMD claimed.
There are unofficial reports over the Internet that ATI may release its chip known under “RV870” and “Evergreen” code-names in September or October. However, there are also claims that ATI Radeon HD 5000-series is only due in November.