AMD gaming: Last week, Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NYSE:AMD) held a press conference in Honolulu, Hawaii. Although the main reason behind the event was the presentation of its new suite of graphics cards for PC gamers, other interesting announcements were made. AMD is placing a larger bet on the gaming arena.
Although the technical details were not yet revealed and the specs for the new high-end Radeon R9 290X card are still under embargo, some specifics have leaked. For instance, the official launch is projected for Oct. 15th, 2013, at 12:01 AM EST.
With its Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) powering Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)´s new Xbox One and Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE)´s Playstation 4, the next big step is tapping the PC gaming business.
The new cards, based on a GPU new architecture code-named Hawaii, point towards gaining space not only amongst gamers, but also amongst developers. In this line, the company made public a new co-development project with DICE, the game designer responsible for the creation of Battlefield, a highly successful series of military simulations and first person shooters.
The project points towards providing game developers better instruments for optimizing graphics performance, and visual definition and fidelity. The companies are working on a low-level “console-like” Application Programming Interface (API) –branded Mantel– and a related suite of tools that will help developers improve their programs’ compatibility and performance across a wide range of systems. “Engineered for AMD PC graphics solutions, the Mantel API allows direct calls to GPU resources with less CPU overhead and better efficiency throughout the graphics pipeline” (Forbes).
Moreover, the partnership “gives the combined effort much needed critical mass. Battlefield 3 and its follow-one Battlefield 4 are powered by one of the most visually impressive game engines in the industry. Frostbite 3, the next generation game engine from DICE for the Battlefield series is said to utilize Mantel as well as DX11” (Forbes).
Further reinforcing its bet on gaming, AMD announced on Monday that it will launch a new gaming app: AMD Gaming Evolved. Powered by Raptr, the app is supposed to allow players to use in-game tools including web browsing, video via Twitch, screenshots, and chat.
As the gaming industry continues to grow and game consoles even stand a chance to enter China (consoles are banned, at the time), AMD seems to be planting the seeds for a big harvest coming ahead.
Disclosure: Javier Hasse holds no position in any stocks mentioned