When AMD revealed their GPUOpen and Boltzmann Initiative, it seemed like a last-ditch effort to get back some GPU computing and enterprise marketshare. Nvidia had struck first with CUDA and because of its success, many GPU computing platforms have largely been based on CUDA, with OpenCL lagging behind. With the Boltzmann Initiative AMD hoped to steal some Nvidia CUDA customers and they’ve just snagged a big one with their FirePro GPUs.
In partnerships with AMD, CGG, a geoscience company working on gas, oil and resource mining simulations switched over from a full CUDA platform to one entirely based on OpenCL and compatible with AMD. What’s more, they dropped all of their existing Nvidia GPUs and upgraded to FirePro S9150’s based on Hawaii (290X/390X). With the recent changes in graphics architecture, AMD has led in terms of computing with GCN especially shining in this regard.
With one major conversion under their belt, AMD now has a great example to show off to other potential customers. With HIP, up to 90% of CUDA code can be ported without any extra developer input and it looks like the befits of moving to AMD’s platform are worth the 10% of work. Hopefully, AMD will continue to score more enterprise wins, a market which they haven’t done as a well in for a while, and it is incredibly lucrative.