AMD's Fabrication Process in Trouble...
AMD's marketing engine announced the other day that they are announcing the three-core processor. They state: Citing Mercury Research, the company said quad-core processors made up less than 2 percent of desktop computer shipments in the second quarter -- signaling the need for a wider range of multi-core products. http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/070918/amd_chip.html?.v=1
What does this actually mean?
AMD's fabrication process is in trouble. When the manufacturing of 4 cores on a single die is completed, naturally a test is performed to see if all 4 cores work correctly. For those that have 1 core that doesn't perform well or doesn't work at all, it then gets disabled and put in the "NEW three-core!" pile.
Does shipping faulty chips that have 1 core disabled make you feel good? AMD has enough of these to make a new SKU. Would you pay $10-20 less than a quad-core chip for only 3 cores?
I say that right now, AMD's fab process is having trouble, and the company is struggling with what to do with all the faulty chips. Analysts and press that I spoke with at yesterday's commencement of IDF did not see this as a positive move for the company. One analyst actually exclaimed, "Why would they reveal this!?"
Now, I like AMD as much as any other tech-geek. I want to see them succeed and stick it to Intel. Competition is good. But this, the announcement was a complete mistake.