back to article AMD posts $157m loss, will lay off 15% of workers this quarter

One week ago, AMD warned investors that its financial results for its third quarter of 2012 were going to be worse than it had previously estimated, with revenues down about 10 per cent from the previous quarter rather than the 1 per cent, plus or minus 3 per cent, that they had forecasted earlier. They were spot on – not that …


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  1. LarsG

    More than decimation.....

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The AMD quandary

    Crap CPUs great GPUs, where as Intel are great CPUs crap GPUs. Can I have an Intel CPU with an on die AMD GPU please ?

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: The AMD quandary

      AMD has crap CPUs?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The AMD quandary

        No. Just they did not manage to keep up with the latest chip from Intel. Last generation were great (at least for the price), this generation I've heard are below their competitor, rather than equal to. :(

      2. Paul Shirley

        Re: The AMD quandary

        This years new CPU lines basically just caught up with the 2010 Phenom II performance. That's nearly 2 years of stagnation in high end CPU scalar performance, starting from a level below Intel, the tradional profitable business. The heterogeneous computing cores seem to have attracted little actual use or interest and low prices.

        So yes, you could easily say current AMD CPU's are indeed piss poor efforts, only competitive on price - not good for AMD's profits.

        I'm glad I grabbed an 1100T hex core before they dropped that entire line.

        1. kb
          Thumb Up

          Re: The AMD quandary

          Actually I don't know how it is there across the pond but the Phenom II line is still a REALLY good bang for the buck here in the states. i have been getting 1035T and 1045T chips for less than $120 and the Phenom X4 BEs for less than $100 and you can find the Athlon X3s for as low as $60 if you keep an eye out. You can build a VERY nice system for less than $400 USD that will do anything you want it to do, even game.

          But you are right the FX Bulldozers and Piledrivers are a massive fail, the chips are too weak, too hot, suck too much power, and because they are so expensive to make they end up priced too close to the Core i5s to make them worth having, its just a bad design and AMD is stuck between a rock and a hard place.

          lets hope that former Apple chip designer they recently hired who worked on both the A6 as well as the Athlon 64 back in the day can come up with something truly competitive, because the last thing we need is Intel having a monopoly. I have to wonder if it looks like AMD may go under if intel will end up giving them a hand just to avoid antitrust, just as MSFT did for Apple back in 97.

      3. kb

        Re: The AMD quandary

        Fraid so Bulldozer is a disaster, its sucks as much as 4 times the wattage of an Intel in the same price range (and up to 7 times as much if you OC the BD to get halfway decent performance) and frankly on many benches the BD loses to the Thuban X6, sometimes by a pretty decent amount.

        See they made several mistakes in the design, the biggest was using computer layouts instead of hand design for the CPU, but also they used less integer (4 shared per module VS 3 per core with Thuban) and floating point units (shared for BD, individual for Thuban) with the theory that they could have simpler cores but just put more of them to make up for their lower individual performance. The problem with that is threefold, 1.- Many programs don't thread massively, thus making them run slower on BD than on even a Pentium G series, 2.- Even those that do thread well tend to hit core zero HARD and then have light loads for other cores, games being a good example, again Pentium G and the Core i series stomps BD, 3.-Finally the weak core design is soooo weak that they end up having to ramp up the clocks which causes BD to just blow through the power.

        So as someone who has been building AMD system exclusively for the past 4 years or so yes, the AMD CPUs coming out now are shite. that is why I have been hanging onto AM3+ for dear life, the sub $100 Denebs and sub $120 Thubans still give good bang for the buck while having decent IPC and single core performance. Sadly with BD unless you are gonna be running databases and web pages, aka server loads, pretty much exclusively? Its just not a good chip, and the little gains they've made with Piledriver haven't fixed the root of the problem which is lousy IPC, weak single core performance, and horribly high power usage due to the fundamental flaws in the arch.

        I'd say its pretty obvious they sank a huge amount of money into R&D only to find the design at its core is a dog, but with no plan B in the wings, thanks to the previous CEO killing Phenom II, they had no choice but to try to recoup some of their losses by selling a turkey and these numbers show folks just ain't buying. I know when i can't get anymore AM3+ I'll be looking at Intel, BD/PD is just not a good chip any way you slice it.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The AMD quandary

      The firmware on AMD ATI GPUs is a problem.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    This is sad. I've never actually had a problem with AMD. I'd want both Intel and AMD to do well. Why? We do better with help, assistance, and life is more fun with others. A 1 horse race, 1 person game, or just a plain old island of a man is boring and unfruitful.

    I hope they can pull through. While Intel have usually had the reach on the speed and power, AMD have been close behind and often beaten them for the price or budget offerings. While seeing Arm or similar take their place would be preferential to a monopoly, loosing a current player is still a loss.

    Although, I know it's not over yet, but such a setback is still not desirable.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You'd think there was an economic depression

    There is nothing wrong from my perspective in what AMD is doing nor their data for the quarter. Intel also was down 5% and they are idling several Fabs due to an unprecedented drop in PC industry sales to those of 2001. The good run could not last forever with a world wide economic depression that has existed for five years and is likely to continue another five years.

    As far as AMD products are concerned they are doing just fine. AMD's Trinity desktop is by far the best laptop choice for most consumers. Trinity desktop according to virtually all reviews is a better value dollar-for-dollar than Intel's CPUs. Vishera which will officially launch on the 23rd is another winning CPU that will provide excellent performance and value. AMD Opteron and even APUs are also selling well in enterprise so as the economy goes, so do PC sales and until real jobs are created sales will be stalled.

    What fanbois fail to comprehend is that 90% of consumers do not buy the over-priced, over-hyped trick-of-the-week CPU. Most consumers buy the best value that meets their needs. AMD meets the needs of many people. Intel buys many of their enterprise sales and charges the fanbois a premium to compensate but you never hear about that.

    With 100 million people having lost their jobs in the past five years and more jobs being eliminated weekly, things will get worse for the PC and most other industries, long before it gets better.


    Good thing that the economy has been generating some steam?

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge


      You might well find that it is the vapor emanating from the presidential erections.

      And if these retards really run "Syria I" and then "Cakewalk II" against Iran, you ain't seen nothing yet. Odds are not good. Not good at all.

      And then again, we have seen it all before...

      "Throughout the year 1937 the President was busy with his misbegotten war on the Supreme Court. But there was at least a hearty draught of good cheer in the rosy reports about business that came to him from the New Deal statisticians. Despite all the fatalities amongst his glittering plans it did look to him as if his great task —rescuing the nation from the depression—was about to be completed. For a brief moment his mind wandered away from the tricky schemes of the reformers for remaking America.... By August, however, while he was yet smarting under the Court defeat, signs began to appear that the vitality was oozing out of the boom. People were still talking about recovery, but the thing that makes for solid recovery in the capitalist system — the revival of real investment — had failed to materialize. The building industry was in the doldrums. Private financing was still on a hopelessly inadequate level ... In 1932 there were 11,385,000 unemployed. But employment improved all during the President's first term. By June, 1937 unemployment was down to 4,464,000, which was still too large. And it never got any better. It got worse and by November, 1937, there were 7,000,000 people out of work. As early as July men were asking: "What has become of the boom?" ... Stock prices began to decline and by September the unpleasant prospect could be no longer hidden. Daniel Roper, Secretary of Commerce, was putting out rosy statements about business. But the facts had seeped into the White House and on October 8, 1937, Jim Farley talked to Roosevelt about business. Roosevelt pooh-poohed it. Everything was all right, he said. It was all a move by business to discredit his policies. But by the end of October, the grim facts about conditions could no longer be ignored. The market crashed and administration critics were saying this was the end of the New Deal. In November, at a cabinet meeting, Miss Perkins brought up a report just prepared by her statistician, Isador Lubin. It showed employment was off two per cent, she said, when it ought to be up two per cent. The heavy industries were behind and sales following the automobile show were disappointing. She feared things might be dangerous in view of conditions. Henry Morgenthau, the Milquetoast of the cabinet, got the courage to speak up. He said business was complaining that the capital gains and undistributed profits taxes were impairing recovery. Then he dared to say: "I think it would be heartening for you to show how far better off we are today." Roosevelt shut him up with a rude rebuff: "Oh, for God's sake, Henry! Do you want me to read the record again?" Poor Henry reddened as Roosevelt glowered at him amidst an embarrassing silence. Farley spoke up. "Boss," he said, "I think the situation would be helped if you would say something that would

      alleviate the fears in business. Frankly, I think you should make a quieting statement." Other cabinet officers—Woodring and Wallace—expressed the same views. But Roosevelt was angry. He blamed the depression on Wall Street. Then he burst out: "I get all kinds of criticisms and complaints about the economic situation, but few people come into me with any concrete suggestions as to how the situation can be alleviated. It's easy enough to criticize, but it's another thing to help." Here was the man who had blasted Hoover so unmercifully when it was Hoover's depression. Now there was a Roosevelt depression after he had spent 17 billion dollars. And he didn't like even to be told of it. He denied it at first..." [John T. Flynn, The Roosevelt Myth, 116 ff]

      Nuke blow, because ... well, it's "Demand-producing Keynesianism", right?

      1. Shaun Hunter
        IT Angle

        Re: Steam?

        That's an amusing fictional version of reality you have there.

  6. Shaun Hunter

    A 1GHz P3 is enough for the average user.

    I remember hearing that a lot when I started in the computer industry in 2003. First the Centrino went back to it for a big hit, then the Atom for the home run and now ARM CPUs are there at an even lower price for the grand slam against the traditional PC. I guess they were right.

    If it can run a browser it's good enough for most people most of the time. Big high performance CPUs were bound to tumble at the consumer level. It's too bad Hector Ruiz sold off AMD's MIPS and ARM divisions to Qualcomm, Broadcom and Raza in 2008 right as smartphones were picking up steam. Surely these sales came with no competition clauses. "x86 is the future" indeed. Dumbest thing AMD ever did.

    The second worst move of Hectors and AMD's was to spin off and divest the foundries. AMD was the 11th largest chip maker last year and the largest fabless outfit. What happens when TSMC starts designing their own chips again? "Thanks for paying us to do our R&D fellas, I'll look down on you in the unemployment line."

    They have nowhere to go but down.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Armchair exSPERTs

    Seeing as though Intel, Microsucks, Nokia and many more have missed their sales goals due to the very real economic turmoil, no one with any business expertise would expect much different results than what is being reported. Those who have no clue about business however are quick to post rubbish commentary to support their distorted beliefs.

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