AMDs bid to buy ATI Technologies is making waves in the wireless world, which is wondering when, or if, AMD might buy its way into the Wi-Fi space.
Vendors like Atheros and Broadcom report that their own customers have begun asking them what their contingency plans are, in case AMD buys a smaller wireless vendor. Such a purchase would place the hundreds of millions of dollars each wins from PC OEM revenue in jeopardy.
The model, of course, is Intels “Centrino” strategy—a bundle made up of an Intel-manufactured processor, chip set, and Wi-Fi card. By buying ATI, the argument goes, AMD has already taken a step forward down the road of emulating Intels Centrino platform model.
The obvious next step would be to invest in a wireless maker. For now, however, AMD seems content in allowing customers a choice of Wi-Fi components, as it traditionally has.
What AMDs wireless partners fear are statements like this:
“AMD has long been a leader in providing solutions for networked computation and communications. Going forward, our efforts will focus on providing communications-enabled solutions at the personal computer platform level, where we can leverage our chipset design and systems expertise and the AMD Athlon processor. The interests of our customers, shareholders and employees will be best served by our action.”