NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA)’s CEO, Jensen Huang, talked about rivals – Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) – during the earnings call on Thursday. Huang’s comment was mainly in reference to the recent news of Intel hiring the former head of AMD’s graphics business, Raja Koduri. Both AMD and Nvidia shares dropped after news of the hiring.
A big loss for AMD says Nvidia CEO
Both Intel and AMD have been in the news throughout the week. The week started with Intel and AMD striking a deal to work together on a niche hybrid chip for high-end laptops. Thereafter, AMD graphics unit head, Raja Koduri, announced his resignation. A day later, Intel announced that it hired Koduri to supervise its efforts toward manufacturing in the high-performance graphics chip market.
“There’s a lot of news out there,” Huang said during the third-quarter earnings call on Thursday. “Raja leaving AMD is a great loss for AMD and it’s a recognition by Intel probably that the GPU is just incredibly, incredibly important.”
Talking of Nvidia’s dominance, Nvidia CEO said these processors are “domain-specific parallel accelerators,” and they are the “most complex processors built by anybody on the planet today.” Huang further noted that this is one reason why IBM sticks to their processors for the world’s largest supercomputers, and why every single cloud and server across the globe uses the Nvidia GPU.
Nvidia posted good numbers for the third-quarter, reporting a record $2.64 billion in revenue. Further, their gaming division had a stellar run garnering 25% growth while the data center segment witnessed 109% YoY growth. Gross margin came in at 59.7% indicating that the company is performing well.
Intel hopes to strike gold with Koduri
Intel is eager to expand aggressively in the GPU market as the world is moving toward the artificial intelligence systems. Demand for chips to power such systems, especially in data centers, is growing with rival Nvidia and AMD taking care of the major demands.
Intel, however, is behind in the race, and its latest graphics, in the eighth-generation processors, highlights this. Its latest chip UHD 620, an upgrade over the previous HD 620, does not offer much, notes DigitalTrends. Measured against a common benchmark, 3D Mark Fire Strike, UHD 620 gets a score of 900, whereas Nvidia GTX 1050 clocks an impressive 5,400.
Now, with the addition of Koduri, who brings 25 years of experience in the field of visual and accelerated computing advances, Intel will be hoping to aggressively take on rivals AMD and Nvidia. Koduri has also worked as the director of graphics architecture at Apple.
Talking of Raja’s appointment, Murthy Renduchintala, Intel’s chief engineering officer, stated that the company has grand plans for the computing and graphics capabilities, along with developing a strong and broad differentiated IP foundation. Further, the executive said that Koduri will help the company amplify its portfolio, design new strategies to lead in computing and graphics, and be the driving force of the data revolution.
AMD, on the other hand, says they have a very strong graphics team and will continue to focus on building great products. It sounded like a warning when the company told VentureBeat, “We also have industry-leading graphics [intellectual property] IP and, if necessary, will vigorously defend it.”