Friday, June 29, 2007

Barcelona is a dud...?

It's up to you whether you want to believe the Inquirer. But Charlie the AMD loving penman himself is dissing Barcelona and is writing off AMD being able to compete with it against Penryn.

When I wrote this post, I was bored. But the reality is if Barcelona cannot give Penryn a run for it's money, AMD is in a lot...I mean a lot of trouble. With Nehalem coming next year, they needed to use Barcelona to win back some share or at least stem the share loss. I said it a few weeks ago - AMD's best medium term bet now is Fusion which will allow them to hyper-segment the market. Hector needs to stop playing offense going for 30% market share. He needs to play defense, consolidate his position and return to fight another day.

With Barcelona coming in below expectations. Intel will ease up the price attack in the second half of the year and focus on milking the margins on their superior product line up. If they gain any further share this quarter...which I think they will gain a little, they can afford to focus on improving the bottomline to help drive the stock price up.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Barcelona - at last...?

The Inquirer says Barcelona will grace us on September 10th.

I don't understand a couple of things (he says whimsically):

1. Why are they making such a big deal of pushing server product into the channel. I understand small business probably buys here but surely first thing you want to do is get this into the hands of the OEMs and begin to win back at the large Fortune 500's.

2. What's with the thermals - everything is 95W or 120W.

Finally - I'm glad to see AMD doesn't seem to be giving away the chips at launch. But all this depends on how they perform so bring on the benchmarks dude!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

iPhone pricing - and my thoughts

iPhone pricing is out.

This is one expensive mother. 4GB phone = 499$. 599$ for the 8GB model. A 36$ activation fee. Service plans start at 60 bucks and go to 80 and then 100 bucks a month.

This is a pretty expensive phone and the service plans sound like a rip off. But the 36$ activation fee really ticks me off personally. That's like a slap in the face. Basically saying to customers - you're desperate and we know it.

My prediction...this phone will have a great launch for the first few months. After which sales will fizzle out until the product is launched outside the US and is sold in regular retail not tied to a service plan.

Rob Enderle has a good article on the iPhone here.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

AMD losing workstation share

AMD losing lucrative workstation share to Xeon:


This number is going further south this quarter. AMD will probably end back up at 6 points or so. I already said it - they will still lose money this qtr. Probably around half what they lost in their disastrous Q107.

They need to intro Barcelona fast...but more importantly their biggest medium term hope is Fusion. Until then, Intel will continue to have them on the ropes.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

What's inside the EEE PC?

For those who missed it, Asus announced the EEE PC at Computex. A super small 7" notebook running Linux priced at $199.

Press Release
Flash slide show

What Asus and Intel seem to be keeping mum about is what's inside. Folks are guessing it's either an A100 or A110 part. However, I'm curious. These parts are finding their way into several devices. But not one of them comes even close to this price point. Discounting the cost of not handing over a big fat cheque to Microsoft, I'm baffled how Asus managed to hit this price point unless Intel is giving Asus the parts for free.

Now I may be bullish on Intel currently, but I'm not a putz to believe Intel gives their customers free parts. So I'm wondering how difficult is it for Intel to whip out 80 wafers of Silverthorne before they actually get into mass production. I mean that's all they need considering each wafer gives them 2500 CPUs.

So if any of the tech geniuses out there know the answer, I'd be delighted to find out. Can Intel run 80 wafers? How feasible is this considering Otellini first revealed this product perhaps 3 months ago.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

AMD continues to spin it

Henri Richard continues with the ultra-positive and probably mis-leading rhetoric:

AMD aims to reverse market share slide

This from the same guy who during their Q1 analyst call said that when the final market share numbers came in, the share numbers would not be as negative as the revenue and profit shortfalls. These guys are giving away any credibility they built. I don't think they understand that being predictable and being able to predict the business accurately is a key indicator of how well the management team is able to run the company.

Barcelona shows up - but not officially

Dailytech got a few seconds with Barcelona - and it does not seem impressive right now:

Quick & Dirty benchmark

An existing Xeon beat the Barcelona even after discounting the clock speed advantage for the Xeon.

Low cost laptop from Asus

This is interesting:

Intel, Asustek announce plans for low-cost laptop

If they are able to hit these price points even before Silverthorne then imagine the price point for a laptop with reasonable performance and what it can do for laptop penetration in developing markets. As long as Intel can sustain 50% or so gross margins at these price points because they continue to shrink the cost manufacture, AMD will not have any ability to follow them. At these price points, AMD with their current roadmap will be forced to sell below cost to compete in this segment.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Barcelona...oh Barcelona...wherefore art thou Barcelona?

Day 1 of Computex and no Barcelona announcement. I'm still waiting!