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AMD not to keen to dabble in tablet chips

by on25 November 2014

Not a priority at this point

So far, AMD has steered clear of the tablet market, but the company's decision to embrace ARM designs for power efficient server chips has prompted many industry watchers to speculate that AMD would eventually enter the niche.

However, earlier this year AMD's ambidextrous computing roadmap referenced a new part that could end up in consumer tablets. The AMD Amur is an HSA design based on ARM's Cortex-A57, with AMD Graphics Core Next (GCN) graphics cores on the side.

However, while AMD has the technology and know-how to pull off an ARM-based SoC, it does not appear to be high on the company's list of priorities. Kevin Lensing, senior director for mobility solutions at AMD, told PC World that the company is still looking into the possibility of producing tablet chips.

“We’re evaluating [tablets] closely. It’s not our priority,” Lensing told PC World

As things stand now, AMD has no new tablet chip for next year and it will rely on Mullins parts, which launched earlier this year. Mullins never got a lot of design wins and it's relatively difficult to find on the market. Lensing stressed that AMD has the capabilities to quickly develop a new tablet part in case it feels there is a need for it.

"We can nail it quickly," said Lensing.

AMD's chief competitors, Intel and Nvidia, have been pushing their tablet parts for years, with less than impressive results. Intel is burning billions to get its Bay Trail-based Atoms in as many Android and Windows tablets as possible, while Nvidia is pitching the Tegra K1 as a powerful ARM soc for tablets, car infotainment and more - but neither have gained a lot of high-volume design wins so far.

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