AMD looking to supply CPUs for Aakash, HCL tablets

imagesNEW DELHI: Computer processor maker AMD is planning to enter the mobile devices market in India and is keen on supplying to hybrid notebooks, local tablet manufacturers and makers of Aakash tablets that would supply to the government.

Roy Taylor, corporate vice-president and head of global channel sales for AMD, told ET that the company was holding talks with a few Indian tablet makers to use its accelerated processor units (APU) that improved battery life of the device and were 30-40% cheaper than other processors in the market.

The company, that competes with Intel, is almost a year late to kick-start its presence in India. Intel’s first mobile device was launched with Lava mobile phone maker in April last year. However, Intel’s success and penetration is yet to be seen.

Taylor specified that AMD did not have any immediate plans of making processors for mobile phones or smartphones, where Qualcomm and Mediatek have majority share, but may consider producing processors for mobile handsets in the future.

“We’re very keen to explore Indian tablets makers and will be meeting with HCL, Wipro and all the others in the market, to decide on which Indian manufacturers to pursue. We also intend to speak to vendors for (supplying to) the government,” he said.

Taylor added that hybrid notebooks work as computers and tablets will be its primary focus as these devices run on Windows platform, which is apt use of its processors.

The Indian tablet market has exploded over the last few quarters and is expected to grow exponentially in the next year. Tablet sales in India are 10 times more than what was sold in 2011. CyberMedia Research India (CMR) that reviews the tablet market said 1.1 million tablets were sold in the quarter ended September 2012, and that sales had doubled over the previous quarter.

CMR expects 6 million tablets to be sold in 2013 as demand from consumer, enterprise and government business rises and average price of 3G-enabled tablets drops.

More than 100-odd models of convertible or hybrid devices that blur the lines of differentiation between a tablet and a laptop are expected this year, from the likes of Asus, Acer, Lenovo and HP in India.

Taylor said that India is an important market as it offers a large value proposition, therefore, it was pertinent that AMD increased stakeholder awareness reach out to potential customers and partners to create a market for its product. “We are ready for significant financial investments in India to explore all possible avenues of good long term gains and holistic benefits to our clients and customers,” he said.