Looks like we all can't stop pouring billions of dollars into AMD, Google, Apple, Microsoft

iPhones, iPads about to hit global chip supply wall others have felt, though


AMD reported strong financial figures on Tuesday, showing continued demand for its Ryzen CPUs and GPUs and Epyc server processors during the pandemic and its various stay-at-home rules.

CEO Lisa Su did acknowledge AMD is, like the rest of the world, experiencing the effects of the ongoing semiconductor supply shortage. Gamers were hard hit, for example; those who ordered AMD's Radeon RX 6000 GPUs months ago are still waiting for their cards to arrive. The situation is said to be improving.

“We’ve been working on supply for the last few quarters, and I’m quite pleased with the progress we’ve been making – I will say it's tight,” she said during an earnings call with analysts. It probably won’t markedly improve until next year, Su added. “I have confidence that we’ll continue to grow into the second half of this year with the supply chain.”

Here’s a summary of AMD's Q2 2021 earnings [PDF], covering the three months to June 27:

  • Revenues totaled $3.85bn, up 99 per cent compared to the $1.93bn in Q2 2020, and $240m higher than analysts' expectations. AMD reckons its next quarter will bring in $4.1bn in sales, more than Wall Street's expectation of $3.8bn.
  • Net income was $710m, a big leap of 352 per cent from the $193m this time last year.
  • Gross margin percentage was 48 per cent, an increase of four percentage points year-over-year.
  • GAAP earnings per share were $0.58, up 346 per cent from the $0.13 in the previous year, and beating Wall St's expectations by $0.12.
  • Computing and graphics is where the chip biz makes most of its money, contributing $2.25bn in revenues, a rise of 65 per cent from a year ago. AMD said the sales were driven by graphics processors for data centers. Average selling prices for its Ryzen desktop and notebook processor sales were also up.
  • Enterprise, Embedded and Semi-Custom made $1.6bn, a 183 per cent jump year-over-year. AMD said it won deals with Fortune 500 companies for its third-gen Epyc processors in data centers, we're told.

Su was enthusiastic about the demand from cloud giants for AMD's silicon, and said Epyc server chips powered machines in global providers, from AWS and Google Cloud to Tencent and Alibaba. AMD has been doing relatively well in the high-performance computing world, too. Third-generation Epyc processors helped the biz win supply contracts for upcoming supercomputers for Singapore's national supercomputing center and the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission.

AMD is making progress in other areas, such as automotive and storage, Su reported. For example, its RDNA GPUs are powering infotainment systems in Tesla’s latest Model S and X electric vehicles. Su said her engineers are working hard to stick to their roadmap. Their goal is to get their Zen 4 5nm Ryzen 5000 CPU series out by 2022 as well as the next-generation RDNA 3 GPUs. You can put AMD's numbers into perspective by reminding yourself of Intel's latest figures here and here. ®

As well as AMD and Microsoft, Google and Apple also released their latest financial figures on Tuesday.

Google – well, OK – its parent Alphabet's Q2 FY 2021 [PDF] brought in $61.8bn in sales, up 62 per cent year on year, and a net income of $18.5bn, up 166 per cent. This was attributed to, among other things, a near-doubling in YouTube ad money, a 50 per cent rise in Google Cloud revenue, a foreign exchange tailwind, and an increase in revenue from Google Search and Services. Cloud made a smaller loss, and services made a bigger profit than this time last year.

Apple's Q3 FY 2021 recorded $81.4bn in sales, up 36 per cent, and a profit of $21bn, up 90 per cent. $40bn of that revenue came from iPhones, up 50 per cent. Cupertino warned its smartphone and tablet line will run into the same chip supply shortages others have hit, particularly components fabricated on larger, older process nodes.

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