Apple Hires High-Ranking Chip Designer from AMD

Designer of Trinity APU Leaves AMD for Apple, Joins Former Colleagues

by Anton Shilov
07/20/2012 | 12:40 PM

In accordance with its strategy to boost its chip design capabilities, Apple has hired John Bruno, a former high-ranking chip designer from Advanced Micro Devices and ATI Technologies. At Apple, Mr. Bruno will work as system architect and will likely work together with numerous former colleagues from AMD and ATI.

 

John Bruno started his career at ATI Technologies in 1996 as a designer of ASICs (application specific integrated circuits), then became ASIC design manager, senior ASIC design manager and then was promoted to system architect position. At present, Mr. Bruno is one of the world's leading experts with extensive experience in bringing complex new architectures and their accompanying platforms to market. John Bruno has a proven track record of managing large ASIC engineering teams and cross functional efforts to deliver cutting edge, complex designs with multi-billion dollar revenue streams.

The last work that Mr. Bruno did at AMD was development of code-named Trinity accelerated processing units (APUs) as well as the whole Comal platform. According to his LinkedIn profile, he completed hardware specification for the APU (CPU + GPU SoC) including cost, target die size, power budget and low- power strategies, definition of project bounding box and performance goals for CPU and GPU, DRAM subsystem, PCIe  subsystem, display outputs and multi-media fixed function accelerator blocks.

The reasons why John Bruno left AMD are unknown, but SemiAccurate web-site assumes that after "several seriously talented high level engineers along with many other very capable talents" were either fired, or left no choice but to leave last November, it did not make a lot of sense for Mr. Bruno to stay at AMD.

At Apple, John Bruno will meet numerous of his former colleagues from AMD and ATI Technologies, who mainly left AMD's graphics products group from 2008 to 2012. For example, he will meet Raja Koduri and Bob Drebin, who were high-ranking chip designers at ATI as well as visionaries for GPGPU (general purpose processing on graphics processing units).

The vast experience John Bruno has in system design underlines massive importance that own hardware development means to Apple. In fact, the experience Mr. Bruno has not only allows him to develop system-on-chips for mobile phones or media tablets, but for high-performance personal computers as well.