But with the launch of the chip, and the support of IBM and the others, AMD officials said they expect sales of Opteron-powered systems to climb over the next few months. Seyer predicted that more Opteron-based servers will be sold by the end of the year than systems armed with Intels 64-bit Itanium chip have sold since Itanium was first rolled out. "With todays launch, AMD is making one simple promise," Seyer said. "We promise the AMD Opteron will simplify business.""You have to be realistic about expectations," said Phil Hester, co-founder and CEO of NewIsys Inc., of Austin, Texas. For NewIsys, that means between about 10,000 and 20,000 units shipped in the remainder of 2003, according to Hester. NewIsys also manufactures systems for other Opteron supporters on hand here, including Appro, RackSaver and Angstrom Microsystems. Opteron currently is designed for one- to eight-way systems. On Tuesday, the company released three chips optimized for two-way systemsthe 240, 242 and 244 processors. In May, AMD will release three eight-way processorsthe 840, 842 and 844and a one-way chip in the third quarter, the 144, Seyer said.
While some have criticized AMD for its lack of marketing muscle in garnering a better level of support leading up to the launch, some in the audience here today said such criticism wasnt necessarily fair.