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Has AMD missed its chance with Puma?

by Scott Bicheno on 17 July 2008, 19:22


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Sleeping Puma

Following the launch of Intel’s (NASDAQ: INTC) next generation notebook platform Centrino 2, AMD (NYSE: AMD) responded yesterday by pointing out the ways it thinks its own notebook platform, Puma, compares favourably to Centrino 2.

In our analysis of AMD's comments we pointed out that technology leadership wasn’t much good if the products aren’t easily and widely available to purchase.

Subsequently, asked AMD to provide a list of Puma based notebooks which are currently available to buy.

We received it today and it reveals that just one SKU – the Hewlett Packard Pavilion TX 2520 (Ultra) – is available in the UK. Germany, France and Italy have four more SKUs: two Fujitsu Siemens, one ASUSTeK and one from Toshiba. Apparently there are a few more in the pipeline, although none that we’re aware of that are definitely destined for the UK. Understandably, we expected rather more than this.

When covered the official Puma launch on 4th June, we said: “From a business perspective, AMD has a six-week window of opportunity to leverage Puma's worth. It absolutely needs to ensure that its partners have practically all the design wins available, from 12in sub-notebooks to 19in desktop replacements, ready to buy, before Intel comes marching in, with millions of marketing dollars to hand, and evangelises the merits of Centrino 2.”

We have to assume that, six weeks ago, AMD was hoping to its partners would make more than one AMD Puma SKU available in the UK by mid July.

Meanwhile, as we reported on Tuesday, UK system builder Novatech had a couple of Centrino 2 SKUs available on launch day. While a quick look at HP and Dell’s UK websites didn’t reveal any Centrino 2 models, the fact that Novatech has stock and, according to its commercial director Kriss Pomroy, Novatech has already sold considerable numbers, indicates there are at least some around already.