Items tagged with Chip

If you needed concrete proof that we should all be amazed at just how quickly things change in the technology world, look no further. In 2009, Intel proudly boasted that it would spend around $7 billion to build a massive fabrication facility in Arizona. In the years since, the PC market has essentially been told that it's dying (and soon), and chip makers such as Intel face little choice but to either revert to the mobile bandwagon or create some sort of additional revenue driver given that laptop and desktop sales are going to slowly decline for the foreseeable future. The "Fab 42" facility,... Read more...
Remember the peak of the megapixel war, where every single camera manufacturer was popping out a new point-and-shoot model with a slightly higher MP rating? It feels like we may be entering a similar leapfrog battle in the silicon world, as the race to produce chips with "more cores than the other guys" hits full stride. Though more cores generally make a meaningful difference in performance in multi-threaded workloads, more pixels don't always result in higher quality imaging if optics aren't up to par. At any rate, a new report suggests that Intel's latest project internally involves a massively... Read more...
Google's Chromecast has made a fairly impressive splash in the TV market, as well as the streaming market. Unlike Google TV, which felt cost prohibitive for most, the $35 Chromecast is well within the impulse buy range for most of its target market. Early reviews on the product have been fairly positive, and you may be wondering what sort of innards are pushing things out. If so, Marvell has the answer. Marvell today revealed the Armada 1500-mini, a solution that was seemingly built from the ground-up for Chromecast. It was built to support low-power applications (like TV dongles), as well as to... Read more...
Eager for a bit of microprocessor news from someone other than AMD and Intel? Get ready, because ARM and TSMC are today announcing the first tape-out of an ARM Cortex-A57 processor on FinFET process technology. The Cortex-A57 processor is ARM's highest performing processor, designed to further extend the capabilities of future mobile and enterprise computing, including compute intensive applications such as high-end computer, tablet and server products. This is the first milestone in the collaboration between ARM and TSMC to jointly optimize the 64-bit ARMv8 processor series on TSMC FinFET process... Read more...
You have to wonder: how many companies have to do the same thing before it officially becomes a trend? With Samsung, Apple and select mega-corporations all mulling the idea (or moving forward with plans) to construct their own silicon, it shouldn't come as a major surprise to hear that Lenovo is considering the same. Of course, Lenovo makes far fewer smartphones and tablets compared to the likes of Samsung and Apple, but it ships a vast, vast quantity of business laptops that it has to lean heavily on Intel for. A report from EETimes suggests that Lenovo will "get into the chip design business... Read more...
It's not often that you hear a CEO of a rival company give tips to the very company that many consider to be its archrival, and that's not exactly what's happening here. But it's close. The former CEO of AMD, Hector Ruiz, has penned a piece over at Bloomberg Businessweek, offering up a few words of wisdom for the person who will be taking over as the next CEO of Intel. He makes clear right from the start that he spent "an important part of his career battling Intel," noting that AMD was undoubtedly the smaller of the two chip-making firms. Holding no punches, he stated that AMD was forced to challenge... Read more...
While the latest and greatest always piques our interest, not every device necessarily has to be a flagship product. At CES this year, Qualcomm introduced two hyper-powered Snapdragon chips for mobile devices. Now, the company is ushering in two more, albeit for lower-end products. Slotting in beneath the Snapdragon 800 and 600, the new Snapdragon 400 and 200 are being produced to "take Qualcomm’s technology leadership into the mid-tier and entry level smartphone segments." Snapdragon 400 processor hits at the mid-range, with options including: Dual Krait CPUs running at up to 1.7GHz per... Read more...
It's most certainly a holiday season, and a quiet one at that, but is it also a season of change? For one Michael Goddard, the answer is "yes." While that name may not be a household one, anyone who has followed AMD in recent decades would recognize it. But soon, it'll be a name that's associated with Samsung. Advanced Micro Devices is still struggling to seriously compete with Intel, and increasingly, outfits like Qualcomm, TI, and the multitude of chip makers that produce ARM processors. And with that has come job cuts in recent years, and perhaps a waning morale. Goddard is unique because he... Read more...
At this rate, one has to wonder if die sizes won't be infinitesimal in 10 years. As process technology improvements continue to enable SoC makers to create smaller and smaller chips with more and more power, Samsung has been at the forefront of the push. Now, Synopsys has announced that its multi-year collaboration with Samsung on FinFET technology has led to a major milestone: the successful tapeout of the first test chip on Samsung's 14LPE process. While the FinFET process offers significant power and performance benefits compared to the traditional planar process, the move from two-dimensional... Read more...
What if there was a power-efficient GPU with brains as powerful as a power-sucking desktop chip? We may be on the brink of finding out. ARM has this week submitted the Mali-T604 GPU for full profile OpenCL conformance, and if all plays out, this thing could really knock some socks off in the months ahead. According to the company, it's the first first GPU Intellectual Property (IP) supplier to submit conformance for Full Profile OpenCL, "bringing desktop GPU computing features to the mobile, embedded and smart-TV markets." It doesn't take a huge imagination to see how this could positively impact... Read more...
ARM may have a new wave of customers coming its way thanks to Windows RT, but it surely won't turn down a bit of assistance from the folks at TSMC. This week, the two tech giants announced plans to collaborate with one another in order to "optimize next-gen 64-bit ARM processors for FinFET Process Technology." Wordy? Sure, but the potential impact is notable. It's a multi-year deal that involves alignment of next-generation processor tech, physical IP, and process technology for use in "high-performance, energy-efficient mobile and enterprise markets." According to the companies, this deal will... Read more...
The ultramobile landscape just gets more and more interesting by the week. Samsung's next-generation Galaxy smartphone is widely expected to launch next week, but what's a new smartphone without a new CPU? Not much, as it turns out. The famed Galaxy S II will likely see an upgrade, with the Galaxy S III taking the flagship crown. But what'll be inside of it? This new chip. It's a new Exynos 4 Quad processor, clocked at 1.4GHz per core and designed on 32nm HKMG process technology. It's based on the ARM Cortex-A9 quad-core processor, which promises twice the power at a 20% lower power bill compared... Read more...
ARM's been in the news quite a bit lately, most recently in dealing with Windows RT, but now they're making some waves of their own. They've just announced the new Cortex-A15 quad-core Hard Macro, a power-optimized implementation of quad-core hard macro on 28nm process. In other words, it's a juiced-up version of the Cortex-A15 MPCore processor. It's engineered to run at 2GHz and deliver performance in excess of 20,000DMIPS, while maintaining the power efficiency of the Cortex-A9 hard macro. The low leakage implementation, featuring integrated NEON SIMD technology and floating point (VFP), is said... Read more...
Looks like there will be one less player in the semiconductor market meant to shape up 4G LTE chips. With LTE becoming more and more important from a global perspective, companies that craft LTE radio chips will undoubtedly make loads of money if they can land deals with phone OEMs. But it sounds like one that was destined to work at the end of last year won't even make it to the market. NTT DoCoMo, a Japanese cellular provider, has announced that it has terminated an agreement concerning the establishment of a joint venture company to develop and sell semiconductor products for mobile devices,... Read more...
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