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AMD Transmeta Businesses Hardware

AMD Invests $7.5M in Transmeta 82

Posted by Zonk
from the death-ray-for-peaceful-purposes dept.
trouserless writes with the news that AMD has invested heavily in Transmeta. The power-conscious chip company has been financially ailing of late. AMD is taking payment in stock, binding the two companies (both with suits pending against Intel) together. PC World reports: "Transmeta did secure a few licensing deals, notably in Japan, but it also wracked up heavy losses. In January 2005 the vendor announced job cuts and said it would switch its focus to licensing its power management technology to other companies. Later that year Transmeta agreed to sell its Crusoe chips to Hong Kong company Culturecom Technology Ltd. for $15 million in cash. Last year's deal with AMD, to resell Transmeta chips in Microsoft Corp.'s pay-by-installment PC initiative, raised the vendor's prospects again. But in March Transmeta said it faced delisting from the Nasdaq because its stock price fell below $1 for more than 30 consecutive days."
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AMD Invests $7.5M in Transmeta

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  • Re:Makes sense... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Friday July 06, 2007 @05:43PM (#19773557) Homepage Journal
    They'll still be slow though. Transmeta had an interesting idea with the dynamic recompilation stuff, but it never really panned out. Their chips were light on power consumption, but they were dog slow the first couple of times you ran a program, and then they only crawled up to barely acceptable. Also, Intel did a decent enough job bringing the power consumption down low enough on their Mobile chips that people were in the end willing to accept the shorter battery life for performance.

    Also, it was difficult to even buy a Transmeta equipped laptop because many manufacturers have exclusive licenses with Intel or AMD that prevented them from ever seriously considering Transmeta chips in their laptops. Worse, there is really no practical way for a person to home-build a laptop, and people who build desktops generally want performance over power consumption. The processor market is a tough game to get into. They should feel pretty good for surviving this long.
  • by suv4x4 (956391) on Friday July 06, 2007 @06:21PM (#19773981)
    Transmeta, the company with some quite amazing chip technology (do you know how it translates microcode on the software level to simplify hardware etc? pretty exciting stuff) was left in the position of a patent troll.

    Investing 7.5 million in Transmetta is called "investing heavily".

    YouTube, a company built on nothing (it's just a damn site for low res flash videos), that didn't make a dollar profit before google bought it, costed 1.8 billion.

    A typical startup investment from a VC is around 3-10 million dollars and that's not "heavily" at all..

    So with numbers that distorted, I know now: we're in a very fragile bubble right now, and when it burst, it'll be ugly. Uglier than before.
  • Re:peanuts (Score:4, Insightful)

    by GizmoToy (450886) on Friday July 06, 2007 @06:38PM (#19774153) Homepage
    It is practically nothing, but it's probably a good move on AMD's part. Intel's been basically running the show recently, and power consumption is becoming increasingly important. AMD will pick up some power-saving techniques that will help them compete with Intel down the road and will have paid very little for them.
  • Opteron redux (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ghoul (157158) on Friday July 06, 2007 @07:46PM (#19774919)
    The success of the Opteron came out of the DEC Alpha teams AMD hired away from Compaq. Now AMD is going to get the Transmeta innovations. Intel spends gobs of money on internal research to come up with new innovations. AMD being smaller cant spend the same so it is constantly on the prowl for talented researchers working at companies going down the drain and buys up the innovations at bargain basement prices and in this way manages to match Intel in the innovation game. Expect something as big as the Opteron was to come out in 2 years time.

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