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WD overcomes Hitachi acquisition hurdle

Posted: 25 Nov 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:disk drive? hard drive market? WD-Hitachi deal?

"AMD just doesn't matter. Even Intel doesn't care about AMD anymore, the firm doesn't even register on Intel's radar, it's that far behind," McGregor noted.

AMD sources, however, were quick to defend the firm's chances, even in the case 28-nm should change course over the coming weeks.

"Even if we were forced to stick with 40nm Brazos, it would not be the end of the world," an AMD insider told us. The firm feels it has a successful product with Brazos, which is aimed at the $299-$400 notebook market. 20 million have shipped so far through Q3.

"We'll be ok because of the price point Brazos is currently at in the market," said the AMD insider, adding that the firm was a lot more optimistic about its upcoming Trinity products, which are the next generation to the 32nm Bulldozer-based Llano.

"Trinity is in good shape," he said, though some believe the firm may have trouble matching Llano's performance-per-watt ratio and would leave a gaping hole in AMD's ultra-low power product line at a time when tablets and lower powered notebooks are all the rage.

Meanwhile, Globalfoundries said it would not comment on its customer's foundry selection process or on their products unless they did so first. The spokesman also said problems with Llano had been specific to that product and that yields for AMD's 32/28nm Bulldozer products were on target and not affecting AMD's ability to meet customer commitments.

"We are still the only foundry producing HKMG products that can be purchased in stores now," the Globalfoundries spokesman said, noting that the fab expected to ship "far more" HKMG volume in 2011 than all other foundries combined.

"In a recent call with financial analysts, AMD confirmed that the Llano ramp has essentially matched the Brazos ramp at TSMC. Given that Brazos is a very small die on the mature 40nm node process, this is a significant achievement. Llano is a much larger die, far more complex, and it is on 32nm with HKMG," he said.

If AMD were to change manufacturing partners for its 28-nm APUs, it could take up to 18 months for chips similar to the plannedbut failedKrishna/Wichita designs.

An official AMD Financial Analyst Day is to be held in February, with more updates and roadmap changes scheduled for that time frame, but in the meanwhile, we can expect public changes to be announced in December.

- Sylvie Barak
??EE Times

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