Hot off the heels of launching a new generation of Ryzen processors built on a refined 12-nanometer FinFET manufacturing process (Zen+), AMD is now looking ahead to next year, which is when it will roll out Zen 2. It won't be a paper launch, either—during a recent earnings call with investors, AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su confirmed that AMD is already sampling its 7nm Zen 2 processors and is gearing up for a volume launch in 2019.
"We have a 7nm GPU based on Vega that we'll sample later this year. We have a 7nm server CPU that we'll sample later this year. And then, obviously, we have a number of products that are planned for 2019 as well. So it's a very, very busy product season for us. But we're pleased with the sort of the execution on the product roadmap," Dr. Su said.
This is a different AMD than we're used to seeing. The company is firing on all cylinders and there is genuine excitement over its product launches. As we have said in the past, Zen is a solid foundation for AMD to build upon, and that is exactly what the company is doing.
AMD is hitting multiple market segments, as well. The 7nm Vega GPU that Dr. Su referred to is being used in its Radeon Instinct accelerator for artificial intelligence and machine learning workloads. AMD teased a photo of the card on Twitter, saying it's currently running in the company's labs and is "on track to provide samples to customers later this year."
As for AMD's CPUs, the company anticipates that more customers will buy into its Zen ecosystem as they become more familiar with the brand and accompanying platforms.
"So all of the sales this year will be around the current generation of Ryzen, and so, that gets us to the mid-single-digit share. 7nm Zen 2 based product we'll sample later this year to customers and that will be in production in 2019, and we do believe that the adoption rate of the second-generation could potentially be higher than the adoption rate of the first-generation, mostly because customers will be more familiar with our systems and our products," Dr. Su added.
Dr. Su also pointed to the server market, which AMD is targeting with its Epyc processor line. Adoption is picking up in that space, too—just last week, longtime Intel partner and supercomputing powerhouse Cray added Epyc processor options to one of its high performance computing (HPC) product lines.
Life is good for AMD at the moment, and that is reflected in its most recent earnings report in which the company said it pulled a profit of $81 million on $1.65 billion in revenue last quarter, versus a $19 million loss in the previous quarter and a $33 million loss in the same quarter a year prior. AMD is on solid footing, and as long as it continues to execute on time, it should see more positive quarters.