December 22, 2014
Year in Review: Mobile Market Slows, LTE Grows (MPR/MCR)
LTE is becoming an option at all price points, and 64-bit processors are about to take over the market. At least one processor vendor faces a make-or-break year in 2015.
Broadcom’s “Wicked” Push Into IoT (MPR)
Broadcom’s BCM43907 integrates dual-band Wi-Fi, RF timing synchronization, and Apple’s Airplay, making it ideal for wireless speakers and a number of related IoT applications.
Dueling Alliances Eye 2.5GbE, 5GbE (NWR)
Two industry consortia, the NBase-T Alliance and MGBase-T Alliance, are encouraging 802.3 to set up a “Next Generation Enterprise Access Base-T” study group for 2.5Gbps and 5Gbps Ethernet standards.
December 15, 2014
Ingenic M200 Marks Time (MPR/MCR)
Already shipping in the Geak Watch, Ingenic’s M200 processor is designed for Android wearables, providing two MIPS cores plus accelerators in a small and inexpensive package.
IEEE Forms 25GBase-T Study Group (NWR)
The IEEE 802.3 plenary meeting approved a new study group to standardize 25Gbps Ethernet transmission over twisted-pair copper, augmenting the emerging 25G and 50G Ethernet efforts.
USB Type-C Adds Video in Alt Mode (MCR)
Both the MHL and DisplayPort standards route video through the USB Type-C connector, enabling new mobile use cases.
December 8, 2014
400G Ethernet Committee Mulls CDXS (NWR)
The IEEE’s 802.3bs task force is considering creation of an “extender sublayer,” CDXS, that would enable multiple modulation, PCS-coding, and lane-multiplexing methods under a common standard.
Editorial: Qualcomm Targets Cars, Servers (MPR)
Facing slower smartphone growth, Qualcomm is seeking new growth in the automotive and data-center markets, but it must acquire more companies to pave the way.
Qualcomm First With Cat10 LTE (MCR)
The new Gobi 9245 modem pushes downlink speeds to 450Mbps and also improves the long-neglected uplink. No other vendor offers triple-carrier aggregation.
December 1, 2014
Opportunity NoCs, NetSpeed Answers (MPR)
NetSpeed’s network-on-a-chip (NoC) promises to ease SoC development by offering more design automation and better optimization. Its biggest challenge, however, is winning customers away from two established competitors.
Marvell Extends LTE Lineup (MCR)
Marvell will deliver an onslaught of new LTE processors over the next few quarters, including its first octa-core chip and its first processors with integrated GPS.
Marvell Enters Search-Engine Market (NWR)
Marvell is sampling a network search engine (NSE) with a unique SRAM-based design using patents from Questarium, a company it acquired in 2011.
November 24, 2014
7 New GPUs in PowerVR Series7 (MPR/MCR)
With its most ambitious architecture launch since the Series5, Imagination has completely revamped its PowerVR mobile GPU lineup, boosting performance and efficiency.
Xilinx’s SDAccel Goes Heterogeneous (MPR/NWR)
Xilinx has emphasized its interest in OpenCL by releasing new software that eases FPGA development for heterogeneous-compute environments.
Second-Gen RF360 Still Unmatched (MCR)
Qualcomm’s second-generation RF360 chips provide a complete solution for the complexities of LTE RF design. The chips are gaining designs wins, particularly the envelope tracker (ET).
Mali-T800 Boosts ARM GPUs (MPR/MCR)
ARM’s new T800 GPU extends the performance of its popular Mali line. The company also updated its video codec and display IP as part of its broad portfolio of multimedia cores.
November 17, 2014
Tabula Changes Validation Rules (NWR)
Tabula’s DesignInsight validation tool can shorten 3PLD customers’ development time by providing unprecedented access to the silicon design.
NAND Goes Vertical for Density (MPR/MCR)
Flash memory is critical for devices ranging from smartphones to servers, but to deliver chips with greater capacity, NAND designers have been forced to look in a new direction: up.
Editorial: Putting the “Auto” in Automobile (MPR)
Self-driving technology will become popular quickly, driving demand for high-performance processors in automobiles. Microcontroller and microprocessor vendors are vying for this billion-dollar opportunity.
November 10, 2014
Sckipio, Broadcom in G.fast Race (NWR)
Startup Sckipio is sampling a chipset for G.fast, the new standard for 1Gbps over 250 meters of copper. Broadcom demonstrated its G.fast chipset at the recent Broadband World Forum.
Casting Off the Pipeline (MPR)
Targeting wearables and IoT, Cast offers a modern 32-bit RISC core without a pipeline, enabling greater power and execution efficiency.
MediaTek Adds CDMA (MCR)
By announcing the MT6735, its first smartphone processor with integrated CDMA capability, MediaTek joins a very exclusive club. The chip targets several large operators around the world.
November 3, 2014
Snapdragon 210 Slashes Cost of LTE (MCR)
As Chinese consumers move quickly to 4G, Qualcomm has announced a new LTE processor that targets smartphones selling for as little as 400 yuan.
RapidIO Gets Coherent With ARM (MPR/NWR)
RapidIO.org, along with ARM and a list of leading embedded-processor vendors, has commissioned a task force to update the RapidIO protocol to support coherent processing in ARMv8 processor clusters.
ARM Stretches CoreLink at Both Ends (MPR)
ARM’s third-generation CoreLink cache-coherent-network (CCN) IP includes two products: the CCN-512 supports up to 48 CPU cores, and the CCN-502 reduces area and power.
October 27, 2014
Soft Machines Targets IPC Bottleneck (MPR)
A new technology called VISC promises greater performance by breaking down a single thread and executing it on multiple cores. The technology works in hardware on any program and any instruction set.
AppliedMicro ARMs for Embedded (MPR/NWR)
AppliedMicro’s new Helix family of ARMv8-compatible embedded processors is based on the company’s X-Gene server chips and also inherits DNA from its older PacketPro communications chips.
Freescale’s LS1 Gets 64 Bits (MPR/NWR)
Sporting 10G Ethernet and TDPs of 8W or less, the new QorIQ LS1043A and LS1023A are the first 64-bit ARM processors in Freescale’s low-cost LS1 series.
LTE Release 12 Evolves Before the Leap (NWR/MCR)
Release 12, the third LTE-Advanced iteration, enhances existing techniques that improve wireless coverage, capacity, and data rates. It also unlocks new capabilities and foreshadows major changes in Release 13.
Editorial: Long Road for ARM in Servers (MPR)
HP has launched its first ARM cartridges for its Moonshot server, but the specs show that these products exceed Intel’s performance only for certain workloads.
October 20, 2014
ARC HS38 Can Run High-Level OS (MPR)
The new HS38 CPU core from Synopsys can run full versions of embedded Linux using its MMU, cache-coherent SMP, optional L2 cache, and other new features.
Aquantia Enables 2.5GbE Over UTP (NWR)
Aquantia has extended the capability of its 28nm AQ2xxx PHYs from three speeds to five by using proprietary signal-processing capabilities to add 2.5Gbps and 5Gbps modes.
Editorial: Intel Pays to Play in Mobile (MCR)
Intel's $1.5 billion investment in China’s Tsinghua Unigroup adds to the billions of dollars the company has already spent in hopes of winning smartphone market share.
October 13, 2014
Tomahawk Delivers 32x100G Ports (NWR)
Broadcom sampled its long-rumored Tomahawk switch to lead customers, becoming the first vendor to offer 32 ports of 100Gbps Ethernet in a single 3.2Tbps switch.
Cortus Targets IoT With New Cores (MPR)
Cortus's new APS23 and APS25 cores offer small die sizes and low power consumption, tailoring them for Internet of Things (IoT) applications.
Wi-Fi Moves From Combo to Baseband (MCR)
According to our new forecast, mobile processors with integrated Wi-Fi will outsell Wi-Fi combo chips by 2018, helping MediaTek and Qualcomm take share from market leader Broadcom.
Allwinner Launches Low-Cost Octa (MCR)
The A83T processor integrates two clusters of four ARM Cortex-A7 CPUs running at up to 2.0GHz and targets midrange white-box tablets.
KeyStone Targets Industrial Apps (MPR)
Texas Instruments has revised the specifications of some KeyStone II processors and added support for industrial and extended temperature ranges.
October 6, 2014
Cavium Touts Revolutionary Switch (NWR)
Mere weeks after acquiring Xpliant, Cavium launched the first chip from the Xpliant developers. The CNX880xx Xpliant Packet Architecture (XPA) scales from 880Gbps to 3.2Tbps and offers up to 32x100Gbps Ethernet ports.
Maxwell Illuminates the Masses (MPR/MCR)
Nvidia's new GTX 980 GPU delivers full Direct3D 12 support and enables global illumination by implementing the first real-time path-tracing rendering capability.
Cortex-M7 Doubles Up on DSP (MPR/MCR)
ARM's new 32-bit Cortex-M7 aims to bring higher-performance digital signal processing to MCUs for high-end embedded applications. The new architecture delivers 47% better compute performance than Cortex-M4.
September 29, 2014
MIPS Warrior Joins 64-Bit Battle (MPR/MCR)
The I6400 CPU is the first licensable core in Imagination Technologies’ Warrior family to implement a 64-bit architecture. As an interAptiv core, it fits in the middle of the MIPS lineup.
Kodo Pumps Up Network Bandwidth (NWR)
A simple yet powerful data-encoding scheme, Random Linear Network Coding, can improve network throughput by 2x to 10x, depending on its network layer and vertical application.
GPU Compute Enters Mobile Domain (MCR)
Mobile devices are adopting heterogeneous computing at a rapid clip, but benchmarks are lagging because of conflicts among OS vendors.
Editorial: Intel Delays Jeopardize Growth (MPR)
Surprising delays in Intel’s 14nm roadmap could reduce revenue during the PC selling season and affect other markets in 2015.