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AMD Is Telling a Really Good Story, but Can It Deliver?

It has been a rough several years for Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ: AMD  ) . After beating Intel (NASDAQ: INTC  ) senseless during Intel's ill-fated Pentium 4 generation, Intel came back swinging and reversed every last point of PC and server market share that it had gained during that time. While Intel's execution was pretty breathtaking at the time, Intel's landslide victory was also driven by AMD essentially shooting itself in the foot with poor strategic and technical decisions. AMD hopes to wipe the slate clean with a brand-new, clean-sheet design.

AMD's K12 is a fresh start
The biggest problem AMD has faced over the last several years has been an extremely poor micro-architecture codenamed "Bulldozer." It ran hot, took up a lot of die area, and was just plain uncompetitive along any axis that mattered -- performance, power, and manufacturing cost. Over the last few years, AMD has refined Bulldozer, bringing out Piledriver and more recently Steamroller, which have fixed some -- but not all -- of the competitive problems vis-a-vis Intel.

It seems, however, AMD is finally tossing away the Bulldozer legacy and rebuilding a new processor core from scratch codenamed K12. In fact, AMD is doing two flavors of the chip: one that implements the X86 instruction set and one that implements the ARM (NASDAQ: ARMH  ) instruction set. From what AMD has indicated, these will be roughly comparable in terms of performance, power, and area.

Tossing away Jaguar, too
It seems AMD is consolidating its development efforts to the X86/ARM CPU pair and will likely no longer have two separate cores for different segments -- one converged core to "rule them all." This is very similar to what Intel does with its "big" Core product family, which is used to span everything from tablets to high performance servers. Intel also has a lower-cost, lower-power core targeted principally at smartphones and tablets, but also scales to low-cost PCs. Since AMD is not gunning for the smartphone market, this isn't a problem.

The K12 design point
Interestingly enough, while AMD's new K12 (both X86 and ARM variants) seem to be of the "bigger" variety. This makes sense since AMD is aiming for its core business to shift from the traditional PC market to things like:

  • Networking infrastructure
  • Dense servers
  • Semi-custom
  • Embedded

Having fairly powerful ARM and X86 cores that exceed the performance (and power consumption) design points of stock ARM cores (ARM Cortex A, to be precise) actually makes a lot of sense. If you need a really low power core, go for a Cortex A53, and if you need a solid low-power client (tablets, phones, low cost clamshells), the ARM Cortex A57 and successors will make sense. If you need more, design your own.

Android now open to AMD?
Thanks to an apparent shift to ARM across the stack (client to server), AMD can now more easily access client markets within which ARM is dominant and X86 still struggles. While AMD likely has no business going after the smartphone market, the Android tablet market is open to the company. However, given the robustness of the off-the-shelf ARM IP and the crowded nature of the landscape, it's tough to see AMD offering any meaningful differentiation, here. It's very likely AMD will participate on Android, but it will probably not be a large player there.

The TAM is bigger, but the competition is broader
AMD has always been able to tell a beautiful story about how it's changing things up, and that this time it's different. If AMD can execute, win back a good chunk of PC market share from Intel, and deliver on its goals in these new, adjacent markets, that would be absolutely fantastic for AMD's stock -- the recipe for well more than a doubling of today's share price.

However, it's important to keep in mind that just building an ARM core isn't enough to deliver the riches. In PCs, AMD still competes with Intel -- the goliath that won't take its foot off the pedal. In networking, AMD competes with Intel, Avago/LSI, Marvell, Cavium, Freescale, and Broadcom. In dense servers, AMD will be competing with Intel, Applied Micro, Qualcomm, Marvell, Cavium, Samsung, and potentially others.

Foolish bottom line
By hopping onto the ARM bandwagon, AMD "escapes" an "unhealthy duopoly" as one of its executives put it, but instead of facing just Intel, it is now facing Intel and a slew of other, much stronger semiconductor players. The TAM got bigger, but the competitive landscape got even broader.

But, with a brand-new set of processor cores, AMD is finally ready to improve its competitive positioning starting in 2016. This won't be easy, but if AMD can deliver what it claims it will be able to, then there could be a long-term growth story here. But that's a big "if."

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Read/Post Comments (40) | Recommend This Article (5)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

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  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 9:54 AM, keeperoftheq wrote:

    The new trend is rising after earnings and staying up. Millions of shares were shorted before earnings that are now under water. Q2 earnings will be well above expectations along with guidance.

    I say this because the 2nd half of the year is always the biggest quarters.

    Xbox One will be launching in China and 25 other countries in September. Millions of chips will be needed in perpetration to not only fill that pipeline but in perpetration for the holiday season.

    Q4, game console sales, historically, equal the sales from the other 3 quarters combined.

    The Seattle ARM server will be shipping in Q4.

    GPU sales are so strong that Global Foundries was added as a second source. This will help AMD keep up with the demand. Gone are the days of the cyber coin minors buying up all the cards forcing the gamers and DYI crowd to shop for nVidia cards.

    In Q 1, AMD stated that we will be having several design wins in the PC market and that revenue will be increasing. Add in that the PC sales are not declining as expected will also add to the bottom line

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 9:55 AM, Beerfloat wrote:

    They're certainly very good at delivering buzzwords (latest batch is HSA, HUMA and Mantle) that get the base all hot and bothered.

    Not so much at holding on to market share in traditional product lines (laptops, desktops, servers) and gaining any in growth areas (like anything mobile).

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 10:09 AM, TEBuddy wrote:

    Beerfloat, they have taken share and lost share over the years. I predict they take a few percentage points in laptops/netbooks in 2014 with its Beema and Mullins products that are superior to Intel's offerings. Those products are already shipping. AMD's server future is just gearing up. This article is actually about that, telling us how disappointing the existing architecture is and they are releasing a new start in 2016. But before then, AMD will be the first vendor with major ARM server offerings.

    Even the Beema APUs will likely find their way into servers.

    And by the way, HSA, HUMA nd Mantle have already proven their value and performance aspects. So buzz that all you want, they work.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 10:36 AM, romeras wrote:

    read this beautiful story:

    -EU court to rule June 12 on Intel challenge to $1.5 bln EU fine:

    May 6 (Reuters) - Europe's second-highest court will rule next month on U.S. chipmaker Intel Corp's challenge to a record 1.06-billion-euro ($1.47 billion) fine levied by EU antitrust regulators five years ago, a court official said on Tuesday.

    The penalty, which represented 4.15 percent of Intel's 2008 turnover versus a possible maximum of 10 percent, came after an eight-year investigation by the European Commission which decided Intel had engaged in anti-competitive practices to block a rival.

    The European Union competition authority said at the time that Intel sought to thwart Advanced Micro Devices by giving rebates to PC makers Dell, Hewlett-Packard Co, Japan's NEC and Lenovo for buying most of their computer chips from Intel.

    The Commission said Intel also paid German retail chain Media Saturn Holding to stock only computers with its chips.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 10:57 AM, romeras wrote:

    Intel Should Exit Mobile, Analyst Says

    Jessica Lipsky, EETimes

    5/7/2014 07:30 AM EDT

    SAN FRANCISCO — Analysts at JP Morgan are calling for Intel to shut down its mobile and communications group to improve corporate profitability in the wake of poor earnings per share in the first quarter of 2014. But the x86 giant and at least one other analyst said the company should stay the course in the hotly competitive smartphone and tablet market.

    “We continue to believe mobile is unprofitable for Intel," a JP Morgan statement read:

    We continue to believe Intel will lose money and not gain material EPS from tablets or smartphones due to the disadvantages of x86 versus ARM and overall low profitability of the tablet and handset processor market. If Intel were to shut down its mobile business, we estimate it could unlock roughly $0.50 in 2015 EPS.

    The mobile and communications group saw a $3.1 billion operating loss in 2013, with 1Q 2014 losses hitting $929 million and revenues at $156 million. While Intel officials acknowledged the loss, several were quick to call recent financial numbers an “investment” in the mobile ecosystem.

    Click here to read more ...

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 11:06 AM, Beerfloat wrote:

    TEBuddy When it comes to mobile, it's not as if we haven't heard this story before: Before Jaguar it was going to be Bobcat, and again before that Turion, both of which were at some point supposed to start tipping the scale in mobile market share. Instead, they merely contributed to AMD's steady decline.

    While that was happening x86 compatibility has lost importance as a potential AMD advantage as ARM swept in from below and converted some of the previous netbook/low end laptop market into tablets, hybrids and Chromebooks.

    On the server side, AMD's market share has now eroded to a negligible 3% in 2013. So the plan is to go low power many core, and offer an ARM options. But is there any indication that the market is waiting for ARM in this space? Well, some niches might be. But many workloads remain inherently serial in nature and best performed by high IPC architectures. They're just a poor match for architectures that rely on many-core for throughput. At the same time, AVX, Xeon Phi and also the dominance of CUDA mean that classic Intel servers with or without Tesla are still a solid choice for parallel tasks. And really, APUs in servers? Who needs that? They are not particularly suited for high IPC CPU tasks OR parallel ones. Non starter.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 11:41 AM, clausbohm wrote:

    First you guys say hey AMD has potential (When the stock is going up) then you say oh the company may have issues (When the stock is going down). Come on guys!!!!!!

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 11:48 AM, KenLuskin wrote:

    Ashraf writes: >>>"it's tough to see AMD offering any meaningful differentiation, here."<<<

    1)Too bad Ashrat has never heard of GRAPHICS!

    2) Too bad Ashraf has never heard of the HSA!

    3) Too bad Ashfaf does NOT understand why Mark Zuckerberg believes that Occulus VR will one of the future computing PLATFORMS!

    4) The FUTURE of computing will be INCREASINGLY GRAPHICLY based!

    5) ONLY Nvidia can try to compete with AMD in high end graphics!

    6) But Nvidia has NEVER produced a 64 bit chip.

    7) But, Nvidia has NEVER produced an actual SERVER chip.

    8) AMD also has far, far, BETTER INTEGRATED GRAPHICS!

    BOTTOM LINE: AMD has THREE overlapping

    blocks of IP and experience that NO other company has:

    High end Graphics +64 bit + Server IP= a company that has NO PEERS!

    Intel's graphics SUCK!

    Nvidia lacks server IP, and has NEVER produced a single 64 bit chip!

    AMD is in a LEAGUE of its own!

    AMD will DOMINATE the NEW ERA of COMPUTING that requires powerful GRAPHICS!!

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 12:09 PM, Beerfloat wrote:

    KenLuskin Having Red Bull for breakfast? Or just a permanent caffeine IV? :D

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 12:37 PM, masterwallstreet wrote:

    In my opinion only, I see you are changing your tune about AMD. What is going to happen to Intel on June 12 when the EU court makes the ruling that Intel was giving rebates to companies for not carrying AMD products. This is a monopoly and antitrust issue that Intel broke the law and tried to deliberately sabotage and damage AMD. If Intel loses on June 12, this is a smoking gun for AMD to file suit for damages and losses and it will probably be a lot bigger than the $1.5 billion that EU courts will fine Intel. In fact I would not be surprised if it completely wipes out AMD debt. Intel is illegal to use these tactics for antitrust and monopoly. It is okay to issue rebates to sell your product but it is illegal to issue rebates for not carrying someone else's product. This is what Intel tried to sabotage, damage and destroy AMD by these illegal tactics and I hope that Intel gets nailed to the wall for their actions.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 1:25 PM, Beerfloat wrote:

    The ruling may or may not be confirmed. If it is, the 1.5 billion could be upheld or adjusted. That's still uncertain.

    What is clear however is that AMD has already settled their civil suit (for a paltry 1.25) and so the Intel suing business has closed shop.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 2:02 PM, ta152h wrote:

    Ashraf, I'm not as clear as you are that they are going with just one x86 core and one ARM core moving forward.

    In fact, I got a somewhat different impression, although it's difficult to be sure. With Skylake, it appears they like the ability to use either ARM or x86 in the socket, and it's quite unlikely they'll be using their 'big' x86 core there. Of course, Skylake could just be a very short term project, but that also doesn't seem likely.

    Even you have to admit Jaguar/Puma is a far superior design to Intel's failed Bay Trail design. Intel can use very low pricing, but it doesn't really change that despite a more refined lithography, it's not much smaller, and it performs far worse. Sure, you can, and did, show a high-end Bay Trail beating a slower Jaguar, but we know what happened when that same Bay Trail went up against the Athlon 5350. It got smoked. Both in CPU and GPU. Badly.

    Of course, with Puma out, AMD even more severely beats Bay Trail in the high end, and is very competitive in tablet wattages. So, it's a nice design, and it shouldn't go away. Bay Trail, on the other hand, not so good.

    I disagree that Steamroller has removed a lot of the non-competitiveness of Bulldozer. If it has, it's very minor. Steamroller is still not a competitive technology by any stretch of the imagination. It's a bad design, that has to die.

    I think AMD's doing it right. They're creating differentiation in 2016 by taking ARM to new performance levels before anyone else. They're focusing on a process that should be much more competitive than where they are now, and are using an instruction set that gives them a distinct advantage over Intel. Most importantly, they are ditching the terrible BD/PD/SR design.

    I'm not sure their differentiation in the low-end will work, which appears to me to be little more than offering designs where their ARM processors can be substituted with x86 at manufacturing. It's something, but I'm not sure the advantage will translate to that many design wins.

    I bought more shares on this news. They know what they're doing. They executed well on Jaguar. Executed well on Puma, and have a very attractive product. They failed with Steamroller,and are killing it. Seattle is a reality, and has been demonstrated.

    They are doing quite well. Not the "always late" AMD, or one with unrealistic goals.

    Compare that with the stupidity at Intel that made them think an x86 processor was what was needed for phones. Or the stupidity at AMD that thought the weird two integer units per module was a good idea.

    They're on the right track.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 2:26 PM, raghu78 wrote:


    K12 is AMD's ARMv8 clean sheet design. its a high performance core. Jim Keller seemed to hint that it would be a very wide machine. I guess as wide or wider than Apple Cyclone. It could cause major headaches for Intel Atom based servers. Keller stated that ARM had inherent architectural efficiency over x86 because its decoders were less power hungry than x86. He said you could spend more transistors on driving performance (execution pipes) in ARMv8. Keller boldly said they are extending the performance range of ARM. So its clear that AMD is coming out with a core which is far more powerful than Cortex A57.

    The x86 core was not named. Jim Keller stated the new x86 core would take the best of both the core families - the ability to clock high frequency which is found on the current big cores coupled with the inherent efficiency of the current small cores.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 3:41 PM, H2323 wrote:

    Stop fluffing Intel to try and help your position, not enough people read you, you cant impact the market.

    AMD has increased their competitive position with kaveri/carrizo and beema/mullins and you know it. Not game changers, it's stops the bleeding though.

    The server/cloud/data application of the ambidextrous platform has promise. It's not a home run, could serve a want/need. I think you would agree that AMD holds some advantages vs it's new ARM competition.

    The new AMD ARM and x86 architectures are related, not the same. Same design team, designed as the same time, started two years ago. Siblings you might say, share a parent are not alike though. If you dig a little deeper around the net you see that the cat family extends into 2016...To conclude that it's dead is wrong, we don't know, so much can happen.

    Second The bulldozer family does not run hot, IHS is soldered unlike Intel until you get to the Xeon re-badged i7's. The original bulldozer came out in 2011 get over it. Intel hasn't had the greatest reputation with temps on big chips, people de-lid them far more often.

    The idea is to have both new arcs malleable to fit custom solutions. Intel is not proposing any "major" architecture change until 2017-18.

    And lastly I wouldn't compare the infamous old management team with this one, your just fooling yourself into a losing position.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 3:47 PM, H2323 wrote:

    "KenLuskin Having Red Bull for breakfast? Or just a permanent caffeine IV? :D"



  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 4:32 PM, TEBuddy wrote:

    Beerfloat, your baseline presumptions are wrong. Brazos was VERY successful in advancing AMD's mobile share, while Turion was their big core offering. And APUs are not good for parallel tasks? What the heck do you think 512 GPU cores are for? What do you think Xeon Phi is? Do you have any idea of what you are talking about?

    And who said AMD won't have high IPC? They are not abandoning X86 big cores, just adding high performance ARM cores with high IPC. Puma has high IPC, better than Intel Atom. Maybe you mean single core performance which would mean big cores at high frequencies. Why do you think AMD is designing an ARM core for high frequency? I just don't understand your logic.

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 7:25 PM, mtechac wrote:

    AMD is the only company that can deliver hybrid combined CPU and GPU technologies.

    To begin with, Intel is just a CPU company with no ability to design and deliver high-end GPUs technology and/or IP.

    The latter was demonstrated when Intel totally failed to deliver Larrabbee, after bluffing for years that it will kill NVIDIA and AMD. Instead it was the most shameful failure in technology from a large company like Intel.

    It just proved that AMD did the right thing by buying a very advanced GPU company for their IP and technology.

    AMD will kill Intel when it delivers a high end 64-bit ARM APU. Intel chip foundry technology will be useless compared to the ARM savings, and that is without counting that AMD will have 3d transistors chip foundry access by that time.

    AMD already has an impressive set of technology that nobody, and not even Intel, have. HSA, hUMA, natively fused CPU/GPU, etc.

    AMD may not have the money to spend to build very high-end and fast CPUs, but at the low end, AMD new HSA architecture is far superior to the old obsoleted Intel architecture.

    Intel high-profit business will begin to collapse this year when all the ARM companies, which many of them are customers from Intel (APPLE), will deliver their own 64-bit ARM CPUs.

    AMD will put the nails in Intels coffin, since they will have the first 64-bit ARM servers. AMD is the only company with the technology to deliver and to take the market back from Intel.

    I will challenge the AMD "Can Deliver" message and say that Intel "Will Not Deliver" mobile, high-end GPUs, and will easily predict that Intels profits will begin sinking this year since they will begin losing the 64-bit server market, 64-bit laptop market, and APPLE will not need Intel any more since they have already their 64-bit ARM designs and will not be needing Intel for too long.

    AMD at its current bottom barrel prices is a very profitable investment because it will never go broke, but Intel will slide like a rock in these next couple of years..

    Between AMD and Intel, I like AMD a lot more for the next few years.. Those investors with the brains to understand technology already have made 100% on AMD and will be making several more 100% profits. With Intel, there is only a big down slope to go because they are losing market share and paying customers to use their products is never a good profit model and spending so much in research and chip foundry processes will finish killing Intel..

  • Report this Comment On May 07, 2014, at 9:20 PM, Stuart511 wrote:

    The story that AMD is telling is a far cry from the story this writer (and I loosely call him a writer) is telling.

    Now the writer acknowledges he owns shares of ARM.

    AMD announces they will produce ARM/AMD server chips.

    Ashraf, make up your mind, you are all over the map and have been consistently wrong about AMD.

    You continually live in the past. Rory Read is the best thing to happen to AMD in decades.

    Accept it and live with it! in Intel and AMD

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 2:46 AM, Beerfloat wrote:

    TEBuddy 512 GPU cores in the APU is a low to mid-end solution for undemanding gaming as well as assists in a handful of applications. Just like the APU CPU cores, they are not well suited for performance scenarios.

    Regardless of whether your server application benefits most from CPU or GPU style processing, the fish nor flesh APU solution does not really make sense. Better solutions are widely available for both kinds of tasks, and already succesful.

    "Why do you think AMD is designing an ARM core for high frequency?"

    AMD is quite clear about their reason for going with ARM. The reality is that they have been forced down this path. They can no longer afford to try to compete with Intel on performance.

    Similarly, their push for APUs is almost completely driven by the fact that this is simply the technology that they happen to have access to. Not by any particular demand in the market place.

    And no amount of buzzwords can hide the fact that they are not particularly outstanding at it either. Because really, APUs are just another word for SOCs, which are practically a commodity these days. Everyone is already in this space.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 2:48 AM, Beerfloat wrote:

    "AMD is the only company that can deliver hybrid combined CPU and GPU technologies."

    Wrong. APUs are just another word for SOCs, and everyone is in this space these days.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 6:29 AM, soid212 wrote:

    Even A. Eassa sees the silver lining for AMD but with a big "if"......I never expected this from Ashraf, well AMD made him change his mind, We have to give it to Rory!

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 9:33 AM, rav55 wrote:

    Billions or ARM chips are selling vs only a few million x86.

    AMD has delivered since 2007 when they announced the concept of the APU (and coined the term and made it proprietary) and the long term plan towards Heterogeneous Computing and HSA without actually coining those terms.

    AMD HAS EXECUTED. Intel is following suit.

    I find it interesting that AMD is raining on Intel's Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge parade with Sky Bridge.

    Intel does not know how to compete in the low power low performance market. In fact I do not see x86, Intel or AMD in the small tablet space ever. The small tablet being the Tab Pro 10, 8.1 and the iPad Mini. Microsoft bloatware is the cause.

    For an OEM to be able to market a tablet with both ARM and x86 silicon and only need to source ONE motherboard could be huge.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 9:40 AM, rav55 wrote:


    Actually SOC is NOT TECHNICALLY a hydridised CPU and GPU. AMD has gone way past the SOC with true hybridization and only they can do it. AMD is merging the x86 and Radeon gpu core architecture with graphics core next and HSA.

    Whitout any additional debate, go here and read. This starts on page three which is relevant to my point. Start at the benning for a very interesting read.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 9:55 AM, rav55 wrote:


    "What is clear however is that AMD has already settled their civil suit (for a paltry 1.25) and so the Intel suing business has closed shop."

    AMD has NOT settled in Europe. They are free to sue Intel under the auspices of EU law.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 9:58 AM, TEBuddy wrote:

    Beerfloat is in his own world, and doesn't know what he is talking about. You could explain it to him, but he can't understand.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 10:56 AM, rav55 wrote:


    Well as you know you can lead a horse to water but that doesn't keep it from peeing in it.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 11:45 AM, mtechac wrote:

    "Wrong. APUs are just another word for SOCs, and everyone is in this space these days."

    This shows a total lack on knowledge of what AMD has achieved.

    AMD has made the cpu and gpu cores the same citizen. Meaning they can use paged/virtual memory, the cores can be scheduled/queued for processing, gpu and cores now share the memory in exactly the same way and processing tasks can be scheduled independently to cpu or gpu cores.

    What other companies are doing, including Intel, is putting a gpu(s) cores in the same chip packaging where the cpu is and adding some fast connection between the cpu and gpu.

    The latter is not high-end technology, it is just a packaging feature.

    AMD took additional years to achieve a native hybrid processor that uses gpu and cpu cores in the same way and architected to work independently and to be scheduled.

    NO COMPANY can do what AMD has just achieved because they don't have the GPU high end technology and the CPU technology that AMD has. Intel does not own high-end GPU technology and failed miserably to create a high-end GPU (the Larrabbee project) and NVIDIA is just a CPU company with not much cpu expertise.

    AMD, after Intel payed AMD customers, so that they will not buy AMD chips, had very few money for investing in higher end products.

    But now AMD is using its brand new hybrid architecture from the bottom up. AMD has only released the first, and only in the technology history, fused hybrid processor.

    It is just a matter of time where AMD will be releasing higher end APUs with much faster processing capabilities.

    Everybody knows that APUs need fast memory, and AMD is working on it.

    Once AMD begins tuning their APUs and releasing more powerful APUs, Intel designs will be obsoleted since Intel is just a CPU company and without a high end CPU from NVIDIA and/of AMD, it is just a low end laptop company.

    AMD is the only company in the world to offer both decent CPU and high-end GPUs, and AMD is on the way up to a lot more sophisticated processor architectures with its new hybrid architecture.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 4:52 PM, Saywhat wrote:


    Give us one example of a SoC that includes GPUs. (Graphics Processing Unit). At least check the online definition of SoC before claiming you know what you're talking about.

    APUs are the only chips that combine CPUs and GPUs. Since Intel's graphics are no good, the only company that can do a great job of combining high performing CPUs and GPUs would be AMD.

  • Report this Comment On May 08, 2014, at 9:53 PM, Beerfloat wrote:

    ARM + Mali 600. ARM + Kepler. Intel + HD.

    All of these provide integrated GPUs, all of which can also be used for parallel tasks through APIs like OpenCL, CUDA or DirectCompute. These SOCs also have additional dedicated function blocks to implement features like video en- and decode, crypto, network acceleration etc etc.

    The implementation details of how these GPUs and other functional units interact with memory differ, as do scheduling, APIs, and of course performance. Typically, there is less emphasis on GPU performance than with AMD's solution, but that's largely arbitrary. Vendors chose to focus instead on CPU performance or lower power use.

    Keep sprinkling the pixie dust on the APU all you want, but this is a solution that is here because that's what AMD CAN offer, not because the market has been clamoring for it.

  • Report this Comment On May 09, 2014, at 1:23 AM, Beerfloat wrote:


    "AMD has NOT settled in Europe. They are free to sue Intel under the auspices of EU law."

    Just making things up as usual eh.

    The terms of the the settlement agreement clearly state that AMD waives any and all rights to sue Intel in any jurisdiction for any events that happened prior to the effective date of the settlement.

    That date is the 11th of November of 2009.

    The EU fine was awarded on the 13th of May 2009. Based on events that had happened prior to that.

    AMD is not getting money from this, period.

  • Report this Comment On May 09, 2014, at 9:47 AM, Uconfan wrote:

    The real question is "what is AMD worth when they take 10 percent of the server market" (or more). Presently the price to sales ratio is one fifth of NAVIDIA, once market share from the servers increases, the market may reprise them quickly. Personally I see them with a similar price to sales ratio of their peers in 2 to 3 years.

    Intel of course is providing "subsidies" to use their products, and I believe a lot of behind the scenes money will bribe the manufactures to produce their products only. The current case in Europe highlights this, however this may be the tip of this ugly ice berg

  • Report this Comment On May 09, 2014, at 11:57 AM, mtechac wrote:

    "ARM + Mali 600. ARM + Kepler. Intel + HD."

    beerfloat, you are missing the whole point.

    Integrated GPUs on the same silicon package is very different from integrating GPU cores within the processor itself.

    AMD has a new processor architecture, which took years to design and make, that integrates processing GPU cores (not GPUs) into the processor design so that they can work with the CPU cores seamlessly.

    Intels and others just put the GPUs in the same chip silicon packaging, they do not integrate the GPUs into the processor architecture.

    SOC are immaterial in this case, because the AMD processor does not need a SOC, or adding the GPu in the same silicon packaging, because the GPU cores are integrated into the processor itself. There are no GPUs and CPUs, there are only CPU cores and GPU cores that can be scheduled independently and that use the same pageable memory and virtual process addresses.

    You need to understand these differences or you will look like you don't know any thing about these CPU/GPU technologies.

    AMD lost a lot of business because it took more years to solve this very complex design, architecture, and chip implementation, but now that it has it, it will begin to regain its market share like it is doing now.

  • Report this Comment On May 10, 2014, at 1:32 AM, Beerfloat wrote:


    I'm not sure if you really understand the implementation difference that you're trying to describe but it does not put AMD into a class of its own. The practical reality is that AMD is competing in a crowded field.

    It is certainly true that AMD has lost of lot of business over the years. It remains to be seen whether their most recent solutions will change the company's fortune significantly.

  • Report this Comment On May 11, 2014, at 9:57 AM, akaRAV55 wrote:


    Your title would be served on a piece about Intel mobile silicon.

    AMD has delivered. While Intel is losing $3.1 billion trying to sell silicon in the tablet and mobile space.

    " In 2013, Intel's mobile chip division lost a hefty $3.15 billion, after posting an operating loss of $1.78 billion in 2012. In the first quarter of 2014 alone, the Mobile and Communications Group saw a $929 million operating loss on a meager $156 million in revenue, according to new financial results issued today by the company."

    So the really BIG question is Ashraf why desn't this piss you off as an Intel stockholder?

    Why aren't you frothing at the mouth in a perpetual rant about Intel wasting money in the Mobile space?

    Why aren't you being rational for once in you patheltic writing career?

    Intel is eating it's young as well as it's shareholders money by selling silicon at a loss just to try and keep AMD out of that space. Intel has to continue to evolve silicon in that space and that means more outrageous losses.

    So the storey is really Intel talks a great game but it can not deliver.

    This is not a rational act.

  • Report this Comment On May 11, 2014, at 11:24 AM, CHADBOGA wrote:


    You are making less sense than usual, and you are normally quite illogical.

    If Intel breaks into mobile in a big way with x86, it opens the door for AMD to follow them there.

    Clearly AMD's mobile efforts won't amount to anything without Intel laying the ground work first.

    The situation before us now is like the mid 90's when Intel was trying to become a major player in the Server Market.

    And we will see the same result in Mobile, as we saw in the Server Market.

  • Report this Comment On May 12, 2014, at 4:47 AM, akaRAV55 wrote:


    Actually the Intel AMD settlement agreement ONLY COVERS 3 "Actions". Delaware, Japan and Global Foundaires.

    So you are wrong again as usual.

  • Report this Comment On May 12, 2014, at 4:58 AM, akaRAV55 wrote:


    Intel has not broken into the space because they can not sell silicon. Do you understand the concept of selling at a loss? Intel is giving such massive rebates to bring the price of Atom down to be competitive that the PC and Serveor space is subsidizing it.

    AMD on the other hand is NOT giving rebates and while the margins may be low, They unlike Intel can make money in this space.

    Cortex A8 is goiing to eat Intel's lunch.

    Intel Mobile and Communications Group is already $5 billion in the hole. By the end of 2014 they will be $9 billion in the hole. Intel is well on the way to being $4 billion loosers in the mobile and tablet space this year.

    So Mr. Spock do you and your pointy ears finally understand what a bugger loss is?

    Intel does not need to break into the market for AMD. AMD is already there with superior and cheaper products. Products that they actually make money on. They don't need to give them away to get someone to buy them.

    In fact one could observe that they are dumping Atom into the market. And that would be a good observation as the DUMP is the best place for it.

  • Report this Comment On May 12, 2014, at 1:48 PM, CHADBOGA wrote:


    AMD are no where.

    Intel's rebates will soon end as they up their integration.

    AMD doesn't have a Modem to integrate, they are flat out locked out of many markets because of this.

  • Report this Comment On June 13, 2014, at 1:36 AM, cri33 wrote:

    KenLuskin you work for AMD?

  • Report this Comment On February 18, 2015, at 10:43 AM, PeterKiryluk wrote:

    AMD, has been Lying to all of its customers for the past 10 years all the way from 2006. Intel is years ahead and has been all this time. If people think AMD is great, they are retarded, they can't tell what a toaster is and what a cpu does. Because when you as AMD buyers dont seem to comprehend that they HIDE the actual transistor count on all their Mobile Dual Core Chips for the past 10 years. Repairing 2006-Now computers, I use windows 7 on all, and its not even a close race. Unless u compete with a 2006 410 Million Transistor Dual core INTEL pga478 VS 2014 Dual Core 638pin from AMD. Look for yourselves try to pry the year lie. AMD should be going broke soon, since the law suites might just make them go bankrupt. They pretend they're 141Million Chips are some how comparable to the 293 Million Intel Had at the same speed/ size. Its always double less transistors, unless you buy the 5 "exotic AMD CHIPs on the market. " The fact people don't seem to comprehend wtf transistors do on cpu chips, BLOW MY MIND. Or the shitty AMD 512kb Ram they put on the CPU VS the common average 2MB. SO someone please stop blowing smoke up your own butts and try to see for your sleeves what im trying to tell you. "A clock multiplier is a fancy word for bs too. The ram the FSB, until 2010 AMD also kept this shirad up.

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Ashraf Eassa

Ashraf Eassa is a technology specialist with The Motley Fool. He writes mostly about technology stocks, but is especially interested in anything related to chips -- the semiconductor kind, that is. Follow him on Twitter:

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