AMD has done something unexpected, and joined forces with long-term rival Intel - but before you get excited, it's a partnership on software, not hardware.

The chip maker has agreed to join the MeeGo Linux project, alongside rival Intel and mobile specialist Nokia, in order to be part of the development of next-generation mobile and embedded platforms.

It's a sensible move for AMD to make: its low-power APU designs are perfect for such environments, and while it may struggle to make inroads against market leader ARM it has a better-than-average chance of at least holding back Intel's progress in those sectors with its Atom processor.

Ben Bar-Haim, vice president of AMD's software development division, explained that 'MeeGo represents an exciting, open-source mobile operating system,' and claimed that AMD was 'glad to provide engineering resources to joint industry efforts like MeeGo and expect that this operating system will help drive our embedded plans and create expanded market opportunities for our forthcoming Accelerated Processing Units."

While the partnership is, officially, with the Linux Foundation - of which AMD is already a gold-level member and board member - it will bring the company in close contact with Intel, which developed the Moblin OS which was merged with Nokia's smartphone-oriented Maemo OS to form the MeeGo project.

It's clear that AMD is willing to swallow its pride and work shoulder-to-shoulder with Intel in order to grab a chunk of the mobile and embedded markets for its new APUs, but sparks are likely to fly before too long.

Are you impressed that AMD will be targeting MeeGo with its APUs, or shocked that it would consider joining what is very much still an Intel-driven project? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

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