AMD Radeon Chief Raja Koduri Promises Two All-New GCN GPUs For 2016, More Stable Drivers

Big things are happening in graphics over at Advanced Micro Devices. That first became clear when AMD elevated Raja Koduri to head up its newly formed Radeon Technologies Group earlier this year, and in the two months since then, he's been busy planning out the future, which he recently discussed with industry analysts, according to Patrick Moorhead, an analyst who writes about disruptive companies, technologies, and usage models.

Koduri expanded on what AMD's planning with its graphics driver software and how it will play a key role in growing the new RTG's business over the next couple of years. Part of that entails a new software architecture called Radeon Software Crimson Edition, which will replace the Catalyst Control Center (CCC) that Radeon graphics card owners are familiar with.

AMD Headquarters

Key to that strategy will be to deliver more frequent driver updates, and just as importantly, stable drivers. These will go hand-in-hand with each other, though the RTG division doesn't exist solely to pump out timely and reliable driver updates. There's a lot more in the pipeline.

The RTG unit consists of three parts -- Architecture, Business, and Execution. Having an Architecture branch means coming up with new hardware designs, and towards that end Koduri said AMD will create at least two brand new GPUs next year. These are likely to be 14nm or 16nm FinFET chips from Globalfoundries or TSMC, which will offer greater performance and lower power consumption than what's available today.

Beyond gaming and traditional graphics, AMD is looking at a variety of markets, including virtual reality and something it refers to as "instinctive computing" applications. These involve medicine, factor automation, automotive, and security applications, all of which AMD already competes in, but not to a great extent.

This is a more aggressive AMD than we're used to seeing in the graphics department, which is exactly what the company had in mind when it formed a new group and put Koduri in charge. Stay tuned, it's going to be an interesting year.