RealTime IT News

May The Force Be With AMD

AMD has sent out invitations with a decidedly Hollywood flavor to them to journalists for a Sept. 10 event that sounds like a movie premiere.

Given that the Barcelona family of Opteron chips is due to ship to OEMs this month and be on sale in September, chances seem likely the premiere will be silicon-based instead of celluloid-based.

But the bash is being done in Hollywood style. The invites say the event will take place at the Letterman Digital Arts Center located at the 23 acre, campus-like studio for Lucasfilm, located in The Presidio in San Francisco.

AMD  would not comment on what is taking place, but a grand unveiling for Barcelona seems obvious, given it's promising that chairman and CEO Hector Ruiz will be at the event.

In addition to a Barcelona launch will likely be the introductions of Budapest, a single socket desktop version of Barcelona for workstations, and Phenom, the successor to the Athlon line of desktop/consumer/enthusiast processors.

AMD desperately needs to get these processors out. The Godot-like lateness of Barcelona has cost the company valuable market share that it had gained from Intel and more than a little embarrassment, as well as hurt its most recent fiscal quarters.

Clearly AMD needs the financial help, as it announced today it would offer $1.5 billion in notes to institutional buyers to pay off a loan AMD took out with Morgan Stanley Senior Funding to finance its $5.4 billion acquisition of ATI Technologies last year. Selling off more debt like this means any future loans will likely come with higher interest rates for the company.