AMD to Now Only Update Drivers 'When It Makes Sense'

With the release of AMD's Catalyst 12.6 Beta drivers on Thursday, the company also announced that it's moving away from its monthly Catalyst release plan.

ATI originally released the first Catalyst driver in June 2002 just before its Radeon 9700 "R300" graphics card hit the market. But months after the launch, ATI decided to release a new driver each month. This continued until now, with AMD now having decided to release drivers when it makes sense.

"Our goal is to ensure that every Catalyst release delivers a substantial benefit to our end users; as we have today with the release of the Catalyst 12.6a Beta," AMD said on Thursday. "We will still continue with the Catalyst naming convention; Catalyst: Year.Month., You just won’t see a new driver every single month. We are confident that this will only benefit the end user; you’ll only need to upgrade to a new Catalyst driver, when it makes sense. "

In addition to the announcement, AMD also launched a new AMD Issue Reporting Form. The company said it made a number of improvements to the older Catalyst Crew Feedback form, making it more comprehensive, ensuring that AMD gets the best feedback possible.

"Feedback is very important in every product company’s life, especially in our fast paced environment," AMD said. " This is not just a check-box for us – we take these reports very seriously. We will review every report posted here and investigate every issue encountered. Please use this form whenever you encounter something worth mentioning."

To download the new AMD Catalyst 12.6 Beta driver, head here -- the page lists resolved issues and feature highlights. AMD customers can also download the AMD Catalyst feature preview driver for the just-released Windows 8 Release Preview.

"Featuring full support for the new WDDM 1.2 driver model, this new driver enables customers to take full advantage of the model’s features as applications are updated to leverage them," reads the driver description.

Features include support for the AMD Radeon HD 7900 Series, AMD Radeon HD 7800 Series, and the AMD Radeon HD 7700 Series, native stereo 3D support, a unified video API and more.

  • A Bad Day
    Less useless driver installations=less time wasted=more time spent gaming
  • icepick314
    in another words

    "We only work 2 days a week and have cut down on staff so you'll see updates whenever we feel like it."
  • drwho1
    When things are working good there is no need for a new driver, I use Nvidia on my PC's but my notebook use a Radeon. (so no fan boy here)

    I usually update drivers once or twice a year, to me that is enough.
    After all most of the "in-between" updates I barely notice a difference if at all.

    So "Only Update Drivers 'When It Makes Sense" it actually makes does sense.
  • drwho1
    sorry I meant "it actually does makes sense"
    dammit were is the EDIT Toms?
  • mobrocket
    big companies rarely change anything unless there is money involved
    less drivers = more money for the CEO and managers
  • Chainzsaw
    So I was wondering where those 12.5's were, since there's some minor issues with 12.4.
  • zetzabre
    Sorry AMD, but i don't trust you, not since bulldozer and your loser CEO admiting defeat in CPU competition. I agree if you want to give us only good drivers, that's fine. But we also need to have them quickly.

    It looks like you want to work less and take more time for yourself. In the past drivers we had lots of fixed issues in games and little performance gains. That's not little benefit.
  • amk-aka-Phantom
    drwho1sorry I meant "it actually does makes sense"dammit were is the EDIT Toms?
    In the "Read the comments on the forums" view.
  • amk-aka-Phantom
    Oh, btw, nice going, AMD. Meanwhile, I'll enjoy my nVidia driver updates squeezing more and more potential out of my card.
  • Zingam_Duo
    amk-aka-phantomOh, btw, nice going, AMD. Meanwhile, I'll enjoy my nVidia driver updates squeezing more and more potential out of my card.Yeah, sure, next driver release will turn your GeForce FX 5800 to Kepler 680 :D