If anyone was afraid that AMD would pull the plug on any of its video products, they can rest easy knowing that in this field, at least, the company intends to put all the effort it can muster, instead of canceling plans and letting things stagnate.
Today is AMD's Financial Analyst Day (February 3, 2012), when the company outlines what it wants to do from now on.
So far, the feelings caused by its announcements have been mixed, though one cannot truly state that the decisions made public came entirely by surprise.
On the one hand, the company wants to move swiftly towards truly fused APUs, which can detect on their own when a program can benefit from GPU acceleration.
On the other hand, the CPU, GPU and APU maker has decided to take a step back from the high-end CPU market and stop trying to match Intel's monsters (like the 10-core Ivy Bridge-EP) each and every time.
Fortunately, AMD is going to remain diligent on the graphics board and discrete GPU market segments.
In fact, the company is determined to stay in the lead of this segment and always have products that are better than NVIDIA's.
“End-to-end leadership in discrete graphics is something that we are very committed to and something we will continue to drive forward as this is a key market and a key way for us to leverage our IP,” said Lisa Su, general manager of global business units at AMD.
“Graphics technology ends up being the central piece of our entire roadmap. Graphics is a basic building block in terms of parallel processing capability that allows us to accelerate many-many applications. [...] This is really a secret sauce that goes into our APU line.”
This is a fundamental change of focus, as there was a time when AMD was entirely about CPUs. It is ironic that the ATI brand is gone, but what used to be the ATI business has basically taken over AMD's future.