Bangalore: AMD India Pvt Ltd, the Indian arm of the US-based semi-conductor company Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), on Tuesday launched its range of “fusion” microprocessors, which combine central processing and graphics processing capabilities into a single system-on-a-chip.
The design effort for the family of chips, dubbed accelerated processing units (APUs), were led by AMD’s research and development (R&D) teams in Hyderabad and Bangalore.
Managing director and regional vice president Ravi Swaminathan said the new chips would be key to AMD gaining market share in what he admitted was a very “under-penetrated” market for its microprocessors.
While AMD’s share was at low single digits today, he said that the company had put behind the impact of the recession. Having spun off its fabrication divisions and restructured itself financially over the last two years, it’s well-placed to make an impact in India with the new chips not only in the consumer laptop and enterprise markets, but to revitalize the stagnant desktop market, he said.
Over 11 AMD Fusion-based systems will be launched in India in the first half of 2011 by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) including, Sony, HP, Dell, and Lenovo.
Consumers also stand to benefit from its agreement with rival chip maker and market leader Intel, aimed at preventing exclusive agreements with OEMs which might prevent new technologies from coming to the market, he said.
“For CPUs (central processing units), today there is Intel and AMD. For graphics, there is Nvidia and AMD. AMD thus occupies the leadership spot in combining these capabilities,” he said.
Manju Hegde, corporate vice president, Fusion Experience Programme, said that the conventional set-up of a CPU with a graphics card did not provide the best experience to users. Moreover, “Nvidia and AMD together sell some $4 billion worth of GPUs (graphics processing units) which are just used for gaming. The GPU does not get used for mainstream applications.”
The AMD APU on the other hand, as a combined system on a chip, was designed to enhance internet browsing, high-definition video, and games, he said. In addition, it had long battery life.
The E-series APU targeted laptops and desktops while the C-series targeted netbooks and other small form factors. In May this year, the A series will be launched, which, using the supercomputer-like parallel processing technology of the GPU, would enable 500 gigaflops of computing power, he said.