Despite more than two decades of experience designing and building x86-based processors, AMD is ready to manufacture Arm-based chips if its customers want it do so.
As reported by Tom’s Hardware, AMD CFO Devinder Kumar recently said the company is ready to begin making Arm-based chips at this year’s Deutsche Bank Technology Conference. Kumar’s remarks build on comments made by AMD CEO Lisa Su earlier this year that highlighted the company’s willingness to create custom silicon solutions for its customers.
When asked a question at the conference on AMD’s view of ARM chips, Kumar provided further insight on the working relationship it currently has with Arm, saying:
“We know compute really well. Even ARM, as you referenced, we have a very good relationship with ARM. And we understand that our customers want to work with us with that particular product to deliver the solutions. We stand ready to go ahead and do that even though it’s not x86, although we believe x86 is a dominant strength in that area.”
Building Arm-based chips
Although Kumar’s recent comments didn’t provide any indication that AMD is currently in the process of building Arm-based chips, they did reveal that its customers would be interested in purchasing Arm-based processors from AMD.
While the company could build Arm-based chips for data centers like AWS did with its Graviton chips, it now seems more likely that it would build custom Arm chips for certain customers. In fact, at a JP Morgan Global Technology event earlier this year, Lisa Su first hinted at this idea, saying:
“I think AMD has a lot of experience with the ARM architecture. We have done quite a bit of design in our history with ARM as well. We actually consider ARM as a partner in many respects. From an AMD standpoint, we consider ourselves sort of the high-performance computing solution working with our customers, and that that is certainly the way we look at this. And if it means ARM for certain customers, we would certainly consider something in that realm as well.”
Although AMD is an Arm licensee and has experience with Arm architectures, whether or not the company ends up making Arm-based chips will likely depend on Nvidia’s $45bn Arm acquisition.