We stumbled upon some interesting news, something that we did not expect.
Toshiba and AMD have been working on a new memory project. It is not a new series of AMD Radeon memory modules, it is something a bit more exciting - AMD's first SSD, or rather a series of SSDs.
Toshiba NAND, OCZ controller, AMD marketing
AMD will soon announce its first SSD drive that will come with an OCZ controller, most likely from the Barefoot series, and of course AMD will use Toshiba’s NAND memory. Toshiba has 19nm based NAND memory coming straight from its state of the art fabs, so AMD wants to take advantage of it.
An AMD team was responsible for the specification of the drive, the SSD drive was tailored specially to meet AMD’s needs.
With this in mind, AMD will soon be able to offer better bundles with a CPU, motherboard, graphics card, memory and now even a storage solution. It seems like a nice way of making a few more dollars from desktop bundles and OEM deals.
It’s all about bundles and economics, not performance
With more bundles, AMD can sell more of its parts and develop a better pricing strategy towards system integrators and OEMs who are still into desktops. In spite of the mobile revolution many people, especially businesses still use loads of desktop computers and they won’t be replaced in the productivity department anytime soon.
We are not sure that there is a lot money to be made in the SSD business, in fact we are sure that there isn’t, but for AMD’s decision to enter the SSD space is all about bundles. The announcement is expected very soon, as well as the official pricing and specification, but we are expecting to see 120GB to 240GB drives. AMD is probably not interested in going after the high-end market and it does not want to compete with the likes of SSD heavyweights like Samsung or Intel.
Therefore we think it will focus on value rather than capacity and performance. AMD needs competitively priced drives in a few best selling capacities, not high-end beasts. We don’t expect to see any fancy form factors, either. There is a chance we will see them later on, but for the time being it appears the rollout will be limited to 2.5-inch drives.