CrossFire support on Intel and other partners
FiringSquad: How will this affect ATI’s relationship with Intel? ATI’s RD600 CrossFire chipset for Core 2 is in its final stages of development and is set to hit the market in just a couple of months. Will this project be canned or does ATI still plan on releasing RD600 for Core 2?
No, we’ll still launch that, we have customers who want to see that. The chipset is ready, it’s ready to go, the performance is excellent so we’re going to launch it and we’re very pleased with the overclockability and features. So we’ll still carry on with working with Intel, and we’ll still allow CrossFire to work on 975X going forward. But beyond that it’s really up to Intel.
The whole company, well the new company wants to give as much choice to its customers as possible, so if you want an Intel CPU with an ATI GPU then great, we’ll be happy with that. If you want an AMD CPU with an NVIDIA GPU then we’ll be very happy with that as well. Basically we want them all to compete equally and make sure that we give the best product to our customers. So really the onus is on Intel to show that they want to provide choice to their customers as well. If they want to allow a choice, then we’ll certainly continue to serve that market.
FiringSquad: Does ATI plan to continue to provide CrossFire support for use in Intel’s own chipsets?
Yes, we plan to continue that absolutely.
FiringSquad: What will ATI do to maintain their strong relationship with Apple?
I don’t see how the announcement would affect our relationship with Apple.
FiringSquad: How will this affect Xileon and ATI’s handset products?
In the short term they won’t be affected at all. Longer term though being part of a larger company gives us the opportunity to invest more in those products which is something we definitely want to do, so we’ll see them growing more.
Also there’s a bunch of technologies that AMD has that will be very attractive for that market, for instance AMD has a shedload of application processors, and they have low power technologies, they have, I forget the name of the company that AMD bought but they’re actually known for their low power
Yes Geode, so there’s all sorts of technologies they’ve got there waiting to be discovered so there’s huge potential for synergies in terms of leveraging technologies that already exist within the organization.
FiringSquad: How does AMD plan to leverage this merger?
Well, there’s a number of ways for us. Clearly we have complementary products, so that brings up a lot of opportunities for us in a couple of key areas.
Mobile computing is obviously one where ATI has tremendous products and a real leadership position. We’re in a position [AMD] on our side that it’s an area where we’re really seeking to grow aggressively and this acquisition is very complementary to us doing that. On the commercial appliance side is another area where we’re looking to grow very aggressively. We plan on delivering some really great low-power high performance solutions for the commercial side of the business so that’s another area that’s very complementary with what ATI does.
The consumer digital area is one where we just starting doing with AMD Live and ATI is a real leader here they’ve got great products like All-In-Wonder and also with respect to what their doing with handsets and the DTV side of the business and the game consoles as well. So these are all areas where AMD really has no presence so we’ve got a great opportunity to leverage that expertise.
The last area is the emerging markets, the emerging markets around the world are areas like India, China, Latin America, parts of Eastern Europe, these are all areas where AMD and ATI’s strengths complement each other really nice when it comes to the emerging markets out there.
FiringSquad: So you brought up mobile, you’re really hoping to put together a package to take on Intel’s Centrino platform?
Yeah, we want to be able to package really high performance, low power CPU with a high performance low power chipset and a really high performance low power GPU for mobile, that’s really ATI’s hallmark. As a former mobile guy there [at ATI], we’ve got technologies like DLCS (Dynamic Lane Count Switching) for PCI Express which takes a 16x PCI Express down to just 1x for power reduction. ATI’s got a lot of technologies in the mobile space, the mobile discrete graphics space that noone has been able to replicate. ATI’s always had a leadership position in mobile graphics, and that for AMD will be really complimentary with where we want to go in mobile.