While AMD's (NYSE:AMD) products have fallen behind on the CPU side in the PC space, I believe that the real problem for the company is that it doesn't have a readily identifiable brand. Sure, in the PC gaming space, everyone knows what an ATI "Radeon" is, but when it comes to PC processors, there's no brand more ubiquitous than "Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) Inside". AMD, it seems, is making some interesting moves to try to try to turn the tide and build for itself a brand image.
The first step to building brand image is to have identifiable logos. AMD's new set of logos seems to be much more aesthetically pleasing than previous editions. The new lineup can be found here, courtesy of VideoCardz.com. In my view, these logos are much more aesthetically pleasing than previous generation attempts, and they emphasize the "AMD" name much more clearly than previous logos, which seemed to focus more on the name of the product rather than the company itself. The products from AMD don't exactly have the most inspiring names, at least on the CPU side (A4, A6, A8, and A10 aren't exactly "Atom" and "Core", you know), so it is much better to emphasize the overarching company's name than to try to stick "A10" in front of someone's face with a tiny "AMD" foot-note.
Redoing the logos is likely to prove to be better for sell-through of AMD's products, and I think some brand equity gets built here.
AMD's Brand Spanning More Parts
When I first heard that AMD was going to be rebranding SSDs and memory from other vendors with the "Radeon" name, I thought this was completely senseless. The margins on these products must be razor thin (and if they see any real volume, will tank AMD's blended gross margin), but I believe that this is an interesting strategy that has a real short at further brand equity. AMD now spans game consoles, PC processors, PC graphics cards, solid state drives, and now memory. The idea of a "complete AMD solution" may appeal to many folks, especially in the gaming/enthusiast community, so I think for brand recognition/marketing purposes, this is probably the right strategy for AMD.
AMD is an interesting turnaround story. The deck is still stacked quite heavily against them in the PC space, especially as Intel vehemently fights to take market share to compensate for the slowing refresh cycle, but I think that AMD's "new image" may help to win back some market share - especially in the low end/mainstream - from Intel. While Intel may lose relatively little in sales, AMD's much lower revenue base means that there is a very asymmetric risk/reward profile at play here. And that could be what helps to fuel AMD's recovery and its future viability as a public, standalone entity.
Disclosure: I am long AMD, INTC. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.