Rumor: Next-Gen Palm Handheld to Use OMAP1510
According to an anonymous source in a position to know, Palm's next-generation handheld code-named Oslo will use a Texas Instruments OMAP1510 processor. This combines into a single chip an ARM-compliant processor with a DSP for multimedia capabilities. It runs at 175 MHz.
Palm announced at the beginning of this year that it would be using TI chips in its handhelds that run Palm OS 5 so it seems entirely probable that the OMAP1510 could be at the heart of the Oslo, or whatever its final name is.
The OMAP1510 processor has a dual-core architecture that combines the command and control capabilities of the ARM 925 processor with the high-performance and low power capabilities of the TMS320C55x DSP core.
The TI-enhanced ARM 925 core will handle command and control functions and user interface applications. It is an implementation of the ARM RISC architecture that operates at 175 MHz.
ARM 925 core includes a memory management unit (MMU) for virtual-to-physical memory translation and task-to-task memory protection as well as a 16KB instruction cache, an 8KB data cache and a 17 word write buffer. There is 1.5 Mb of internal SRAM.
Also included in the core is the ARM CP15 coprocessor and protection module.
A Digital Signal Processor (DSP) works alongside the CPU handling the multimedia functions and allowing the CPU to handle other tasks. This reduces the amount of power used, as well.
The C55x DSP core has a highly optimized architecture for multimedia applications, including core level extensions for real-time, low-power processing of streaming video and audio.
It includes 32 kwords of internal dual-access SRAM, 48 kwords of internal single access SRAM, and a 12 kword instruction cache. It has an MMU as well as a dual layer interrupt handler and a direct memory access (DMA) unit.
The OMAP1510 has a wide variety of other features. It has a built-in LCD controller and support for USB, Bluetooth, IrDA, and SD/MMC. It has serial ports for digital audio input and output.
Palm OS 5
The major feature of Palm OS 5 is that it makes the switch from supporting only Motorola Dragonball processors to supporting several types of ARM-based processors, including ones from TI. This will significantly increase the capabilities of the Palm platform without sacrificing backwards compatibility with current apps.
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