Feeds

Players, insert coin: PlayStation 4, Xbox One top up AMD's coffers

Chipzilla's lone x86 competitor struggles back onto its feet in Q4 2013

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

AMD's provision of processors for Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's PlayStation 4 consoles appear to have worked its magic on the chip maker's bottom line.

The company's revenue for its fourth quarter of 2013 came in just above analysts' estimates, and significantly above its earnings for the same quarter in its previous fiscal year.

Revenues for the quarter, announced on Tuesday after the markets closed, were $1.59bn, a bump-up of 38 per cent when compared with the same quarter in 2012, and up 9 per cent from its profitable third quarter of 2013 – a profit it had predicted when reporting its second quarter in July.

The average estimates of the 24 Wall street moneymen polled by Yahoo! Finance predicted revenues for the quarter of $1.54bn resulting in an earnings per share (EPS) of $0.06 – an EPS prediction that was spot-on. Those canvassed by Thomson Reuters agreed with Yahoo! Finance's analysts on the revenue estimate, but pegged EPS to be a penny less.

For the full fiscal 2013, however, AMD's revenues dipped a bit in non-GAAP calculations, from $5.42bn in fiscal 2012 to $5.30bn. Net income losses for the full year, however – also measured in non-GAAP terms – improved from a loss of $114m in fiscal 2012 to a smaller loss of $83m in fiscal 2013.

"Strong execution of our strategic transformation plan drove significant revenue growth and improved profitability in the fourth quarter," said AMD president and CEO Rory Read, citing the "continued ramp of our semi-custom SoCs and leadership graphics products."

Diving a bit deeper into the numbers shows that AMD's Computing Solutions revenue slipped both sequentially and year-over-year, largely due to lower chipset sales. However, as an AMD spokesman noted in an email, the company's Kabini and Temash parts are each system-on-chip packages, so AMD doesn't sell southbridge chips along with them, as the did with the earlier Brazos processor.

On the positive side, the company's Graphics and Visual Solutions revenue increased both sequentially and year-on-year. "GVS segment revenue was up 29 per cent sequentially, primarily due to sales of semi-custom SoCs to Sony and Microsoft for their next-generation game console offerings," company CFO Devinder Kumar wrote in a prepared statement.

Those design wins with Sony and Microsoft have done AMD a world of good, seeing as how those companies announced earlier this month that they had sold 4.2 million and 3 million of their new game consoles, respectively.

Those numbers won't continue to grow at the same rate, however. As Kumar explained, "We expect Graphics and Visual Solutions segment revenue to be down" in the current quarter, "coming off a strong Q4 for our semi-custom SoCs." AMD's Computing Solutions revenue is expected to drop, as well – a normal occurrence in the post-holiday period.

It's that damn moribund PC market again. Last week, Intel reported that its PC division was experiencing flat revenues, despite CEO Brian Krzanich reporting that the company was seeing "signs of stabilization in the PC segment."

It remains to be seen whether AMD's recently unveiled, heterogeneous system architecture–enabled Kaveri chip will light a fire under the PC market anytime soon. AMD, however, apparently doesn't think so, seeing as how its guidance for its Computing Solutions segment projects a quarterly drop.

But AMD fans can hope – and they can take comfort in that fact that, as Kumar writes, "We also returned to profitability and positive free cash flow in the second half of 2013 and maintained our cash balances above $1.1 billion, significantly higher than our target minimum of $700 million."

Don't look now, but it appears that AMD may be successfully engineering what Kumar noted as "the strategic transformation plan we outlined in October 2012." ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
Want to beat Verizon's slow Netflix? Get a VPN
Exec finds stream speed climbs when smuggled out
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.