“I think everyone here wants the Zen [processer] to be good…” says one journalist at this morning’s AMD roundtable event in central London
This event is part and parcel of a kind of comeback tour for AMD, which sees CTO Mark Papermaster run through the latest company advances, and explain why his company is back with a vengeance and ready to tackle the competition head on.
“AMD is very different today from several years ago,” he says. Now focused on gaming, immersive platforms and datacentres, he stresses that AMD is ready for the future with improved graphics and superior CPU. The strategy places a lot of weight on the soon to be released Zen x86 core, which it hopes will finally challenge Intel’s Core i line-up of desktop processors.
In the past AMD placed too much emphasis on smartphones, explains Papermaster. Now it is setting its sights on better underlying tech for for Virtual Reality and the coming wave of immersive experiences.
Fresh from his keynote at IFA Papermaster stresses that while VR headsets are good today, and just becoming affordable, they will only get cheaper and better. Yet ultimately these kinds of experiences will require escalating computing power.
If the computer is not running at least 90 frames per second with a tiny window to render “the image it looks fine but your body can’t handle it,” he explains. And while we have advanced in leaps and bounds over the last few years “it is a long way to get the true human eye experience”.
Papermaster believes it will be 10 years or more until we get “true presence” in VR. But he also has a lot of anticipation for Mixed Reality – which Intel is experimenting with in “Project Alloy”. This is “harder to achieve” than either AR or VR because it has to incorporate the real would into virtual environments.
This is also probably the most useful form of immersive reality and Papermaster feels it will be “dominant in the immersive era”.
NEXT ARTICLEInfoShot: Will robots steal manufacturing jobs?»
Jon Collins’ in-depth look at tech and society
Phil Muncaster reports on China and beyond