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AMD: Smartphones to get HD gaming and movies

Supercomputer will host the content

AMD plans to bring high-definition gaming and movies to smartphones and other devices in an attempt to gives consumers more usability and interactivity. CEO Dirk Meyer also revealed it will build a supercomputer to host the HD content.

According to Meyer, consumers will only need a web browser on a smartphone and a decent broadband connection to access the supercomputer to instantly play games or watch Blu-ray movies. The supercomputer, which will be called the Fusion Render Node, will change the way games and movies are delivered to mobile devices, Meyer added.

It will deliver a petaflop of performance, matching other supercomputers and making it the "fastest graphics supercomputer" in the world, Meyer said.

The Fusion Render Node also has many inherent advantages over a supercomputer, Meyer said. It will consume a tenth of the power of a supercomputer while fitting in a room, rather than halls like some other supercomputers.

The 'graphics supercomputer' is essentially a rack of high-performance desktops with ATI 4800 series graphics cards and Phenom II processors connected to each other and crunching tasks simultaneously.

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The GPUs and CPUs will work in a coherent fashion, but the petaflop performance is based primarily on the GPUs' floating point capabilities, said John Taylor, an AMD spokesman. The system can be expanded by adding more gaming rigs to the rack.

Jules Urbach, founder and CEO of Otoy, demonstrated multiple ATI graphics cards from multiple PCs working together to deliver a first-person shooter game over a wired connection to a client device. Otoy is a software company that helps deliver graphics content from a server farm to client devices, and is working with AMD on creating the HD graphics delivery technology.

"All of a sudden we are taking one of the world's most complicated games and we're putting it in a web page. It's huge," Urbach said.

The server will be ready by the second half of the year. "All you need is an iPhone.... [or] a laptop to use it," AMD's Taylor said.

AMD is fitting the graphics delivery technology into the cloud computing model, where programs are hosted on servers and delivered to consumers over a network. This technology is easily accessible and simple to use, Meyer said.

"Mobile computing is never going to be the same, and cloud computing really has the opportunity to open up new vistas both for the film and game industries," Meyer said.

"Now we're poised for a great leap forward in visual computing as well as mobile computing," he said.

Known for his processor innovations, Meyer did not talk about CPUs, instead trying to focus on AMD's attempts to add realism to gaming and entertainment on PCs.

"I promised I wouldn't reference Moore's Law during the presentation, and I didn't," Meyer said.

See also: Mesh first with AMD Phenom II PC

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