AMD plans consumer electronics market push

— 1:16 PM on December 15, 2006

We already covered the meat and potatoes of AMD's Financial Analyst Day presentation yesterday. However, aside from talking about its processor roadmaps, AMD also had a few interesting things to say about its new position in the consumer electronics business.

Since completing its acquisition of ATI a few weeks ago, AMD has gained a very significant presence in consumer electronics. Thanks to ATI's NXT, Theater, and Xilleon chips, AMD says it is now the top chip supplier for integrated digital TVs (IDTVs, or TVs with integrated digital tuners) in North America. The company doesn't intend to stop there, either: as the IDTV markets in Europe and Asia continue to grow, AMD wants to become the top IDTV chip supplier in the world by 2008. AMD's customers in the IDTV sector already include Hitachi, JVC, Mitsubishi, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, TiVo, and others.

AMD has also become quite involved in the cell phone market, although it didn't reveal any particularly ambitious plans in that sector. Nevertheless, the company expects that over a billion cell phones will be shipped in 2007, and that around two thirds of those phones will have multimedia capabilities. In other words, the market will be ripe for handheld-bound AMD chips like the company's Imageon processors, which are currently used in a number of different phones from companies like BenQ-Siemens, Fujitsu, HTC, and Motorola.

And of course, AMD is doing quite well in the console market, since it's now the sole supplier of graphics processors for both Microsoft's Xbox 360 console and Nintendo's Wii. Overall, AMD intends to quadruple its yearly revenue from the consumer electronics business as a whole:

Source: AMD.
Some of that growth will be aided by convergence between PCs and consumer electronics devices, as well. AMD expects to boost such convergence by not only squeezing x86 processors into new hardware, but also via its future accelerated processors like Fusion. Among other things, APUs will help act as a bridge of sorts between the company's discrete processors and GPUs as well as its integrated hardware for handhelds and consumer electronics devices.

Source: AMD.
While the AMD-ATI merger has been largely presented from the PC point of view in the past, AMD has gained a tremendous amount of potential from ATI's presence in the consumer electronics business. AMD has yet to detail its precise strategy for consumer electronics and convergence, but the coming years should definitely be an interesting time for the company.
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