AMD has bid goodbye to the brand name ATI, the graphics processors chip maker which AMD acquired four years ago. At $5.4 billion, ATI was one of the most expensive acquisition in the semiconductor industry.
Advanced Micro Devices had acquired ATI back in 2006 and since then, experts had been expecting AMD to axe the ATI brand. The speculations seemed to have subsided after AMD continued to offer graphic cards with the ATI logo.
However, now, the company has decided to forgo the brand name and has said that future graphics offering will bear the AMD Radeon logo instead of the ATI Radeon logo.
John Volkmann, vice president of global corporate marketing at AMD, has named several reasons why the brand will be removed. From their research, the company found that “the Radeon brand and the ATI brand are equally strong with respect to conveying our graphics processor offering.”
“Red” team ATI is still one of the largest graphic chips makers in the world, maintaining a near decade-old rivalry with the “green” team, Nvidia.
A battle between fans of both have long been rampant on online, including a variety of Usenet newsgroups. Dedicated newsgroups to each of these brands have a number of subscribers that share, discuss and debate the product and company attributes of each.
At the end of it though as some newsgroups report, ATI hasn’t been the most successful venture for AMD and the company has even been criticized with its management of ATI. However, AMD has come out with some very good products since the acquisition.
However AMD said that the decision to axe the brand came after a series of consultations with some of the company’s key partners; customers for example, said that they were more aware of the AMD brand than ATI.
A major motivator here for the change isn’t simply trying to eliminate consumer confusion (although consumer preference for AMD apparently triples once they realize AMD owns ATI, according to AMD’s research), but the fact that AMD intends to integrate both AMD microprocessor technology and Radeon graphics technology on the same chip… a la NVIDIA’s ION chipset.
AMD plans to begin culling the ATI brand on its graphics line at the start of the fourth quarter of this year and end by September 2011. Existing products won’t see a name change, but new products will branded AMD Radeon and AMD FirePro.
How this will affect ATI related newsgroups is not clear, but a surge in subscribers to the AMD related newsgroups has already begun.