Chipmaker AMD sees opportunity in the healthcare industry, through its alliance with Oracle, revealed its chief executive at the database giant’s user conference this week.

"Our healthcare system is in crisis, but it also represents one of the IT industry's greatest business opportunities," said Hector de J. Ruiz, AMD chairman and chief executive during his Oracle OpenWorld keynote address.

He said AMD will collaborate with Oracle to deliver high-performance, industry-specific solutions based on AMD's low-cost Opteron processor.

With Oracle database applications support for both 32-bit and 64-bit processing on Microsoft Windows and Linux platforms, AMD and Oracle will provide healthcare customers with flexibility and a clear migration path to higher-performance 64-bit computing.

The alliance means healthcare customers can run both 32-bit and 64-bit applications on the same server and also take advantage of high-performance technologies such as clustering on the traditionally less costly x86 server platforms.

"AMD will innovate via a common ecosystem and collaborate as necessary to deliver on the innovation and choices customers are asking for," said Ruiz. AMD's next-generation processor, code-named Torrenza, will represent the industry's first "open source" processor platform, giving developers a way to deploy application-specific coprocessors to work alongside AMD processors in multisocket systems.

Oracle Database is now available on 32-bit Linux and Windows for AMD Opteron; a developer version of Oracle Database is now available on 64-bit Linux. Support for Oracle Application Server, Oracle Collaboration Suite, and Oracle E-Business Suite on 32-bit Linux and Windows for AMD Opteron is expected over the next few months. Oracle will offer select Oracle/AMD customers a beta program for its forthcoming major release of Oracle Database, Oracle 11g.