| SAN FRANCISCO
SAN FRANCISCO May 5 Chipmaker Advanced Micro
Devices has expanded its licensing technology agreement
with Britain's ARM Holdings as the U.S. company seeks
growth outside the slowing personal computer industry.
AMD said on Monday it has acquired an architectural license
from ARM, the Cambridge, England-based company. ARM's low-power
technology is widely used in smartphones and tablets and is also
behind an upcoming crop of energy-efficient server chips.
The new license provides more room for AMD to customize its
chip architecture and differentiate its products from others
based on ARM technology.
The Sunnyvale, California, company is planning this year to
launch low-power server chips based on ARM technology to compete
in data centers against Intel Corp's high-end Xeon
processors. Those chips will use off-the-shelf technology
licensed from ARM in a previous agreement.
"We're well on our way to developing our own ARM cores," AMD
Senior Vice President Lisa Su said at a news conference.
With PC shipments falling for eight straight quarters as
consumers shift toward tablets and smartphones, AMD aims to get
half of its revenue from new, fast-growing businesses such as
game consoles and microservers by the end of 2015.
AMD also plans to expand further into making chips for other
markets, including industrial equipment and medical devices.
At the event on Monday, executives repeatedly described AMD
as unique in its ability to create chips using technology
combining ARM and x86, the personal computer architecture it has
historically used to compete against Intel Corp.
Proponents of microservers, which have yet to be widely
implemented in data centers, say that servers built with several
low-power chips can be less expensive to buy and manage than
servers built with Intel's high-powered chips.
AMD is also supplying processors for Microsoft Corp
and Sony Corp's latest game consoles.
Strong Playstation 4 sales helped AMD beat expectations in
the March quarter but the company has yet to convince investors
it can transform its business. Twenty-one analysts tracked by
Thomson Reuters rate AMD's stock as neutral or negative, while
just six recommend buying it.
(Reporting by Noel Randewich; Editing by Richard Chang)