SUNNYVALE, Calif.--In a move to increase competition with Intel Corp. in PC processors, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. today announced it has licensed the company's 64-bit x86-64 technology and HyperTransport chip-interconnect format to microprocessor startup Transmeta Corp.
Transmeta, in nearby Santa Clara, plans to use AMD's technologies in future x86-compatible processors to extend its product line from 32-bit to 64-bit computing. AMD and Transmeta described their licensing agreement as an alliance to promote next-generation microprocessor standards.
"AMD's x86-64 instruction extensions provide the best upward compatible path for adding 64-bit address capabilities to the x86 instruction set for the PC industry," said David R. Ditzel, vice-chairman and chief technology officer at Transmeta. The highly publicized startup, which launched its power-stingy Crusoe processor last year, is also moving to AMD's HyperTransport high-speed I/O bus technology to offer faster links between chips inside computers, networking gear, and communications systems.
Last February, AMD launched the HyperTransport bus promising to provide an I/O interconnect format that speeds communications between ICs by up to 48 times, compared to existing bus systems (see Feb. 14 story). AMD is lining up companies to form a HyperTransport bus consortium, which is expected to be launched later this year to derail Intel's 3GIO bus format for next-generation systems.