AMD integrating Xilinx tech, pushing software development

AMD integrating Xilinx tech, pushing software development

AMD is looking to quickly integrate Xilinx technology into its CPU business, but perhaps most importantly it is developing software to enable a wide portfolio of applications for its hardware.

In a recent earnings call, AMD CEO Lisa Su said the company sees opportunities to offer stronger products as a result of the technology it acquired when it merged with Xilinx in February.

“As an example, we are integrating Xilinx’s differentiated AI engine into our CPU product portfolio to enable industry-leading inference capabilities, with the first products scheduled for 2023,” Su said.

Xilinx’s experience adds to the strengths of a previous acquisition, Pensando, which is developing smart, programmable software to support software-defined cloud, computing, networking, storage, and security services that could be deployed. quickly on edge, placement or service. – Supplier networks. The Pensando team is putting a lot of effort into their GPUs, Su said: “So I think in total you should see us investing a lot more in software.”

Victor Peng, former CEO of Xilinx and now head of AMD’s adaptive and integrated computing group, said the AI ​​engine is already being rolled out in a number of applications and endpoints embedded in high-end devices as well. , as in cars.

“They’re doing a lot of image recognition, all kinds of inference applications, and this same architecture can be scaled up and incorporated into the CPU’s product portfolio, and as we’ve alluded to, that’s exactly our plan. “, he said.

He added that AMD is also working on unified global software to enable the broad portfolio, but especially in AI. He said there will be more discussion on the subject at the Financial Analyst Day on June 9th.

AMD’s rival in GPU space, Nvidia, has made a massive investment in software. Many analysts point out that Nvidia is not considered a hardware company but a software company, and is said to have five times more software developers than hardware developers in its staff.

So AMD needs to catch up, and what it wants to do is catch up.

A good quarter for revenue

In terms of financial results, five years ago, reading a quarterly AMD statement was as enjoyable as reading an obituary, but that has changed.

For the first quarter, it saw 70% year-over-year sales growth to a record $ 5.8 billion in the first quarter, and AMD expects second-quarter revenue of $ 6.3 billion to $ 6.7 billion. This is notable because the first quarter and second quarter are usually slower quarters for chip companies like Intel and Nvidia. Business sales are often sparse and at the mercy of launch cycles, but consumer sales are tied to Christmas and back to school, so the third quarter and fourth quarter are big quarters, while the first quarter and the second quarter is when things run out. But not here.

During the six weeks of the first quarter in which Xilinx was part of the company, it contributed $ 559 million in revenue and is on track to contribute $ 1 billion next quarter. AMD has increased its revenue forecast for the year to about $ 26.3 billion for the year. Five years ago they were lucky enough to get $ 4 billion.

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Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

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