ARM Reveals Most Energy-Efficient Microprocessor To Date: Cortex-M0+

The world's most energy-efficient processor from ARM? Yep, it's here, and it's the Cortex-M0+, aimed at low-cost MCU, sensor and control markets but destined to shake up way more than that. The company is calling it the "world's most energy-efficient microprocessor." In other words, it has been optimized to deliver ultra low-power, low-cost MCUs for intelligent sensors and smart control systems in a broad Tjrange of applications including home appliances, white goods, medical monitoring, metering, lighting and power and motor control devices. he 32-bit Cortex-M0+ processor, the latest addition to the ARM Cortex processor family, consumes just 9µA/MHz on a low-cost 90nm LP process, around one third of the energy of any 8- or 16-bit processor available today, while delivering significantly higher performance.

This industry-leading combination of low power and high performance provides users of legacy 8- and 16-bit architectures with an ideal opportunity to migrate to 32-bit devices, thereby delivering increased intelligence to everyday devices, without sacrificing power consumption or area.

The Cortex-M0+ processor features enable the creation of smart, low-power, microcontrollers to provide efficient communication, management and maintenance across a multitude of wirelessly connected devices, a concept known as the 'Internet of Things'.  The new processor builds on the successful low-power and silicon-proven Cortex-M0 processor which has been licensed more than 50 times by leading silicon vendors, and has been redesigned from the ground up to add a number of significant new features. These include single-cycle IO to speed access to GPIO and peripherals, improved debug and trace capability and a 2-stage pipeline to reduce the number of cycles per instruction (CPI) and improve Flash accesses, further reducing power consumption.

The Cortex-M0+ processor takes advantage of the same easy-to-use, C friendly programmer's model, and is binary compatible with existing Cortex-M0 processor tools and RTOS. Along with all Cortex-M series processors it enjoys full support from the ARM Cortex-M ecosystem and software compatibility enables simple migration to the higher-performance Cortex-M3 and Cortex-M4 processors.

Right now, Freescale and NXP are onboard, and we're sure it'll expand elsewhere when more CE companies get wind of it. Cheap, powerful and energy-sipping? Let's get this thing into all things mobile, huh?
Tags:  CPU, processor, ARM, Cortex, Chip