AMD will sell server CPUs at Happy Meal prices so you can supersize servers
ARM vs. x86 can wait as first decent Xeon alternatives in ages pressure Chipzilla
AMD has deployed a team of folks to charm enterprise server users ahead of the debut of its Zen designed-from-scratch x86 processor microarchitecture and the message they're sending is that the new silicon represents a chance to supersize servers.
As explained to The Register by Vinay Sinha, AMD's senior director for enterprise in Asia Pacific and Japan, the company's plan is first and foremost to convince enterprise that Zen will be stonking x86 CPUs. Beyond that, the company will point out that its significantly-lower-than-Xeon prices mean a chance to supersize servers with other nice-to-haves, perhaps more RAM or some lovely AMD GPUs.
AMD's tried this play in the PC market, where its newly-hired enterprise sales folks have had some success in price-sensitive markets like government and education where buyers want maximum bang for buck and don't see challenger brands as a risk. Big PC-makers also enjoy the company's pricing, as it gives them different price points. Speaking to The Reg at the Canalys Channels Forum in Macau, Sinha takes great heart from the fact that the likes of HP Inc. now offer AMD-powered premium notebooks. HPE, he said, will offer enterprise servers based on Zen. He feels other top-tier manufacturers won't be shy about practicing Zen and the art of server design so they too can show Chipzilla it can't take their business for granted.
ARM servers, he added, were something AMD tried. But next year is all about Zen and an attempt to remind the market that Xeon is Intel's profit engine and deserves some competition.
As analyst Patrick Moorhead told The Register last week, AMD is on track with Zen if it can flawlessly execute a successful launch. No pressure on those new enterprise spruikers in Asia and beyond then. No pressure at all. ®