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AMD Responds

AMD sent out its own press releases in response to some of the news out of IDF. The company points out that its Barcelona MPU for servers is a true native quad core. AMD also points out that it was first with the memory controller integrated with the MPU and was first to announce a roadmap showing integrated graphics with the CPU. The MPU with integrated graphics, Fusion, is due out in 2009.

AMD saw a severe decline in both MPU revenue and unit shipments in 1Q 2007. The company sis show a strong unit recovery in 2Q 2007, but sales were hampered by falling ASPs. While shipments for desktops and low end servers suffered in 1H 2007, MPUs for notebooks actually increased in both 1Q and 2Q 2007. This week AMD announced major design wins for its Turion 64 X2 dual core mobile MPU with Toshiba, Acer, Dell and Fujitsu Siemens.

In addition to Barcelona, AMD has announced the desktop version, Phenom. This will be offered as native dual-core, triple-core, and quad-core versions. Dual and quad core versions will be released in 4Q 2007. The triple-core version will come out in 1Q 2008.

Semico Spin

AMD may be down but not out. Even though the 1H 2007 has been rocky, MPUs for notebook PCs and high end servers have been a bright spot for AMD, albeit with depressed ASPs. The company needs a successful roll out of Barcelona and Phenom to stay on pace with Intel. AMD tends to be one process node behind Intel. However, the company does tout that its design and the use of SOI makes it competitive with Intel.

One trend Semico sees is the scaling of the number of MPU cores to fit the price/performance segments of the computing market. For many years Intel and AMD would scale frequency to achieve this. This may emerge as another metric for the PC market.

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