AMD: Graphics Cards And the Channel
AMD, the chip and card maker recently had a webcast emphasizing the importance of not neglecting that very unique specialized piece of hardware: your graphics card. Touting the performance and versatility of their ATI brand, they shared some knowledge on an otherwise unknown channel strategy.
Through a plethora of slides, the point was clear: ATI graphics cards will improve your overall computing experience on multiple levels. AMD really pushed Direct X 11 along with Windows 7 integration, but it wasn’t all about pretty graphics and eye candy. The video card is also about productivity and performance.
First up, was ATI Stream Technology, which basically makes Flash video look better and perform more efficiently. Stream Technology offloads a ton of computing power from the CPU and pushes it to the GPU. The result is actually faster performance and a slight sharping of video quality.
AMD also made some noise on the fact that their video cards can support up to 3 monitors on one chip simultaneously. (Run dual video cards and you can see how this could expand quite quickly exponentially.) They also made a good point noting that buying three 24 inch monitors often costs less than buying one giant 30 inch monitor.
So, AMD wasn’t really focused on the VAR in the IT / IS sense, but they did talk a lot about system builders and laid out a strategy that AMD has been working on. It’s a four part strategy:
- Simply put: AMD has some of the best technology and there’s a consumer demand for it. Continually driving that demand by continually working on providing the best technology for consumers and partners.
- Variety: AMD has a video card solution for almost every application. They noted their ATI 5670 for high-end graphics needs, the 5500 series for the mid-range level and the 5400, which was a low-end model with passive cooling heat-sink and good for small-form factor systems.
- Pushing Multi-display technology which increases productivity and overall user experience, while also boosting productivity. ATI’s technology ‘Eyefinity’ lends itself to up-selling more displays.
- Robust hardware that can take a beating and do the dirty work. AMD’s cards can help increase your system ASPs while giving you a robust powerhouse of a GPU. Transcoding video can be off-loaded to the GPU to help convert and compress certain formats.
The webcast was short and sweet and nobody asked any questions. AMD didn’t really dig too much deeper about their channel and partner programs, but they hinted at incentives and other goodies for those who were working with them. Below is a picture of their tiered partner programs.
Their overall motto? AMD “Platforms to Products to Programs to Partner Profits.” Dubbed the “5 P’s”, they suggested that building your systems or company on AMD technology is a smart way to efficiently and quickly leverage all the tech in your system and all the software you throw at it. From motherboard to the money-flow, AMD wants to be there.