ARM And TSMC Land Multi-Year Processor / Innovation Deal

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 "enable sharing of technical information and feedback between the two companies, enhancing the development of ARM IP and TSMC process technology." Here's a bit more: "ARM will leverage process information to optimize the power, performance and area (PPA) of the overall solution to reduce risk and encourage early adoption. TSMC will use the latest ARM processors and technology to benchmark and tune advanced FinFET process technologies."

It's clear that the two have something that the other wants, and the end goal is to make both companies bigger players in enterprise. For a bit more in-depth explanation, dig into the official word below:

The ARMv8 architecture extends ARM low-power leadership with a new energy-efficient 64-bit execution state to meet the performance demands of high-end mobile, enterprise and server applications. The 64-bit architecture has been designed specifically to enable energy-efficient implementations. Similarly, the 64-bit memory addressing and high-end performance are necessary to enable enterprise computing and network infrastructure that are fundamental for the mobile and cloud-computing markets.

TSMC's FinFET process promises impressive speed and power improvements as well as leakage reduction. All of these advantages overcome challenges that have become critical barriers to further scaling of advanced SoC technology. ARM processors and physical IP will be able to leverage these attributes to maintain market leadership, while the companies' mutual customers can benefit from these improvements for their new, innovative SoC designs.

"By working closely with TSMC, we are able to leverage TSMC's ability to quickly ramp volume production of highly integrated SoCs in advanced silicon process technology," said Simon Segars, executive vice president and general manager, processor and physical IP divisions, ARM. "The ongoing deep collaboration with TSMC provides customers earlier access to FinFET technology to bring high-performance, power-efficient products to market."

"This collaboration brings two industry leaders together earlier than ever before to optimize our FinFET process with ARM's 64-bit processors and physical IP," said Cliff Hou, vice president, TSMC Research & Development. "We can successfully achieve targets for high speed, low voltage and low leakage, thereby satisfying the requirements of our mutual customers and meeting their time-to-market goals."

Tags:  CPU, processor, ARM, Chip, TSMC