AMD's Lisa Su announced during an MSNBC interview last week that the company tripled its processor sales this year during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The company also experienced exceptional GPU sales during the same period.
During the interview, Su said that "Ryzen" processor sales had tripled year over year for the Black Friday/Cyber Monday events. Ryzen processors were not on the market the year prior, so it's logical to assume the mention was a slip and that the figures represented total AMD CPU sales.
We followed up with AMD representatives and clarified that Su was specifically comparing total AMD CPU sales on Black Friday/Cyber Monday in 2016 vs. 2017. The numbers come from sales data at Amazon and Newegg.
This year's Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales were interesting for several reasons. AMD's MSRP for its Ryzen lineup has largely been a symbolic number; the majority of models have sold well below MSRP for months. The recent Coffee Lake debut found many Ryzen models experiencing further markdowns, but during Black Friday, some models retailed for nearly $200 below MSRP.
Intel's Kaby Lake and AMD's Ryzen processors changed leadership spots on Amazon's best-selling CPU list frequently over the biggest shopping weekend of the year. Intel has its Coffee Lake processors on the market, technically, but it was next to impossible to buy them during the sales. Instead, retailers discounted the existing Kaby Lake models to contend with AMD's Ryzen. For instance, the Core i7-7700K, often the No. 1 bestselling CPU on Amazon, fell as low as $265 during the sales. That's ~$75 below normal pricing. The depth of the Kaby Lake price cuts was somewhat surprising considering Intel's overall refusal to lower pricing, even after Ryzen's debut.
AMD's Ryzen 7 1700 spent a considerable amount of Black Friday at the top of Amazon's best-selling CPU list, though it frequently traded positions with the Core i7-7700K. Some shoppers defaulted to buying Kaby Lake processors, but that is a particularly poor long-term investment. AMD's aggressive Ryzen pricing stood out as a particularly good value, but Intel's Coffee Lake models also offer more value than Kaby Lake models due to their lower per-core pricing. In fact, Coffee Lake's 50% more cores on i5 and i7 models and 100% more cores on i3 models represent the biggest gen-on-gen change to Intel's lineup in a decade. Unfortunately, supply has been limited, leading many to speculate that Intel's shortage is intentional and designed to reduce the number of Kaby Lake processors in the channel before widespread Coffee Lake availability.