ARM Unveils Next Generation Chip Design
ARM has announced its new Cortex-A8 processor at the ARM developers conference in Santa Clara, California. The new chip design is expected to be far more powerful than current chips making it ideal for demanding mobile products running multi-channel video, audio, and gaming applications. It is expected to offer speeds of over 1GHz.
The ARM Cortex-A8 processor delivers up to 2,000 DMIPS. By comparison, current ARM 9 chips typically achieve around 150-300 DMIPS.
ARM has already secured five licensees for the Cortex-A8 processor, including Freescale, Matsushita, Samsung and Texas Instruments, and future support from major EDA and Operating System vendors.
The Cortex-A8 processor is the first applications processor based on the next-generation ARMv7 architecture, and features Thumb-2 technology for greater performance, energy efficiency, and code density. It includes the first implementation of the powerful NEON signal processing extensions to accelerate media codecs such as H.264 and MP3. The Cortex-A8 solution also includes Jazelle-RCT Java acceleration technology to optimize Just In Time (JIT) and Dynamic Adaptive Compilation (DAC), and reduces memory footprint by up to three times. Additionally, the new processor features TrustZone technology for secure transactions and Digital Rights Management (DRM), and IEM capability for low power.
The Cortex-A8 processor features an advanced superscalar pipeline which can execute multiple instructions at the same time and deliver more than 2.0 DMIPS per MHz. The processor integrates a size configurable level 2 cache which works in conjunction with fast 16K or 32K level 1 caches to minimize access time and maximize throughput. The chip is expected to offer speeds 1 GHz in high-performance 90nm and 65nm processes.
The ARM Cortex-A8 processor is available for licensing now, along with the majority of the supporting technology. ARM expects products using the new design will debut in 2007-2008.
Thanks to Jon Choo for the tip.