Desktop PC users are accustomed to pleasingly regular driver updates for their AMD Radeon GPUs. The game industry is relatively swift to release software based on new and cutting edge tech, and driver updates help the GPU hardware work to keep up to date with these features. With the rapid development cycle it is also important to recognise and quash bugs quite regularly. However, AMD Ryzen Mobile processor-based laptop users (featuring APUs and/or discrete graphics) will often wait much longer between updates.
AMD has observed the groundswell of dissatisfaction concerning Ryzen Mobile driver support and midweek made an official statement on the matter via Reddit. It started by reminding users that its "graphics drivers are typically tailored for specific OEM platforms, so releasing generic APU graphics drivers across all AMD Ryzen mobile processor-based mobile systems could result in less-than-ideal user experiences". While that is true, AMD has signalled that it can step in to make a difference.
The statement below outlines a new plan to increase the frequency of updates next year, aiming for a biannual update schedule. Those with an interest in this statement should still remember that OEM partners will vary in their activities and policies and some will perform better than others in this respect.
We are committing to work with our OEMs to increase the release frequency of AMD Ryzen Mobile processor graphics drivers. Starting in 2019, we will target enabling OEMs to deliver a twice-annual update of graphics drivers specifically for all AMD Ryzen Mobile processor-based systems. Because the release is ultimately up to the OEMs, this may vary from platform to platform, but we want to put out a clear goal for us and our OEM partners. Those updates should be available for download on the respective OEM websites.
That isn't all AMD is looking into, to fix the slow-drip driver malaise. Alignment with the desktop GPU drivers would be ideal, wouldn't it? AMD is investigating this possibility with some OEMS and systems, as it states below.
In addition, AMD will continue to evaluate ways in which we can offer validated graphics drivers for AMD Ryzen Mobile processor-based notebooks aligned to the latest AMD software updates, and will provide updates as soon as we are able.