The last 4-5 years have been rather phenomenal for AMD, while the converse is true for Intel. The company’s share price has grown by 24x since 2014 when Dr. Lisa Su took over as the CEO. As already reported earlier, AMD was one of the (if not the fastest) fastest growing semiconductor companies of 2020, seeing its brand value increase by nearly 2x, with similar figures expected this year as well.
Update: AMD didn’t say anything about squeezing tech like toothpaste. It was the result of a translation error. Apologies.
According to Dr. Su, this ongoing success has been the result of constant innovation, and dynamic technology standards that had to be raised with each generation. Furthermore, the company believes that its growth has been the result of consistent changes at a microarchitectural and I/O level, rather than squeezing its technology like toothpaste [Like Intel has been doing with its 14nm Skylake core over the last 5-6 years].
As we’ve seen since the launch of the 1st Gen Ryzen processors, each new generation brings notable changes on a microarchitectural level, in addition to I/O or process technology, if not all three. The Ryzen 2000 processors with a node shrink from 14nm to 12nm, then to 7nm with Zen 2 are examples of consistent process refinements with every generation. Although Zen 3 retained the same 7nm node as Zen 2, it has a much more aggressive boosting algorithm with significant changes to the CCX/CCD structure.
Being the first adoptee of the PCIe 4.0 node was also a major win for AMD, allowing it to offer vastly superior I/O compared to the competition. At the same time though, the company has started to dial back on platform flexibility, something that has distinguished it from Intel over the last decade. The 300 series chipsets were valid for three generations while the 400 series chipsets were fully valid for only two.
The same will apply to the 500 series chipsets which will be discarded with the introduction of the AM5 platform in 2022. We may get a Zen 3+ refresh (Warhol?) and/or 3D stacked V-Cache, but the next major generation will certainly ditch all existing platforms. Not unexpected or unfair, but as the company has started moving to greener pastures, it has slowly started to leave some of its well-known characteristics behind.