AMD will support one of its CPU series for another 16 years

More than PC builders can hope for.

AMD Spartan chips get a massive 16 years of support.

Generally, consumer CPUs have a short shelf life. While they might last a decade in your system, manufacturers quickly turn their attention to the next generation. Professional chips, however, get a lot more attention. AMD states it’s committed to its Spartan UltraScale+ range for at least the next 16 years, which Ryzen, Threadripper, and Epyc could only dream of.

If you haven’t heard of Spartan before, the lengthy support window makes more sense when you know they run anything from automated defibrillators to CERN particle accelerators. Sure, troubleshooting your PC is a pain, but it’s a matter of life or death when these things fail. For the past 25 years, the range has sat under Xilinx, but AMD is finally bringing it in-house.

AMD says Spartan UltraScale+ will be a big part of the company going forward. ServeTheHome showcases a few internal slides that highlight why the series is a big deal. Aside from processing power and the “industry’s highest I/0 to logic cell ratio,” focus is mainly on efficiency and security.

The big push towards power efficiency is undoubtedly driven, at least in part, by excessive energy prices. There might be an increasing barrier to entry, but keeping the day-to-day running costs down is imperative. After all, hospitals don’t upgrade their life-saving equipment every few years like us DIY builders. A 30% power reduction makes Spartan UltraScale+ cheaper to run and far more viable.

Security is also of the utmost importance. You don’t want people running amok in your PC at the best of times, but sensitive apparatus must be tamper-proof. AMD doesn’t have a perfect track record in this department, but it’s often quick to see resolutions. At the very least, it gives Intel’s Altera a run for its money.

Throwing its weight behind the former Xilinx devs, AMD says the standard lifecycle runs into 2040+. This means a minimum of 16 years, but it could even be longer. Team Red will likely provide companies with an option to extend the lifecycle beyond the standard as it has done in the past. How far into the future that takes us is a matter of time.

We’ve had a fair bit of AMD news recently, and it really feels as though the company is going hard on making itself more competitive than ever and also trying to push the envelope in a few different fields. It’s always good news for us consumers, though, because competition should hopefully lead to better and cheaper products. We might not see decades of support like our professional counterparts, but one step at a time.