The first day of ARM's annual developer conference in Santa Clara, California, has already seen several big announcements from the giant semiconductor design firm. Among them are the release of a new suite of products for enabling Internet of Things (IoT) technologies, an updated architecture for IoT device security and a new 64-bit processor designed for "the next billion smartphone users and beyond."
ARM TechCon kicked off today and runs through Thursday. The annual conference attracts chip architects, software developers, designers, hardware engineers and other professionals who work with ARM technologies.
The Cambridge, U.K.-based ARM licenses its technology designs to nearly 400 semiconductor companies around the world. It currently holds 37 percent of the world's market share for mobile device chips.
Aiming To Speed IoT Development
Designed to speed up the deployment of IoT devices, ARM's new suite of mbed technologies includes a free Device Connector service for businesses, an enhanced mbed operating system and new reference designs.
TechCon will also feature demonstrations of two new mbed designs, including a wrist-worn device with an eight-week battery life and a mesh network-based design for deployment of smart city technologies.
Launched in late 2014, the mbed IoT Device Platform has attracted more than 55 business partners and has a developer community of more than 150,000. For instance, designed in collaboration with ARM mbed, Freescale Semiconductor’s FRDM-K64F board is available now with support for ARM mbed IoT Device Platform technologies, including ARM’s new mbed OS operating system.
The Freescale Freedom FRDM-CR20A [Pictured; Image: Freescale] development board for the MCR20A 2.4 GHz wireless transceiver connects with the mbed-enabled Freescale FRDM-K64F, forming an mbed-supported solution. The FRDM-CR20A board provides a low-power 802.15.4 radio, and when combined with the FRDM-K64F board, creates the basis for a fully functional, wireless, cloud-connected IoT platform, further enabling new technologies including Thread low-power mesh wireless networks, according to Freescale.
ARM today also announced that it is extending its TrustZone IoT security technology to its ARMv8-M architecture for microcontrollers.
"Security is critical, yet small embedded devices often have limited protection or are secured with software-managed security that requires developers to have significant technical expertise," said Mike Muller, ARM's chief technology officer. "By moving the protection down into the hardware architecture, as is achieved with ARMv8-M, we are making security easier to implement and much more efficient."
High-Efficiency Chip Targets Emerging Markets
ARM CEO Simon Segars is scheduled to give a keynote address tomorrow on "building trust in a connected world."
Ensuring IoT security remains a major challenge as more and more everyday devices become network connected. According to research reported last week by the cybersecurity-focused Kaspersky Labs, vulnerabilities have been found in "almost all" of the available devices for today's smart home market.
Also announced today is the new ARM Cortex-A35 64-bit processor, a high-efficiency CPU aimed at first-time smartphone users in developing economies. The company said the processor "marks the beginning of a new family of ultra-high efficiency application processors from ARM."
The company said the new processor uses 32 percent less power than its Cortex-A53 processor, while also reducing the processor's silicon footprint by 25 percent. In addition to targeting entry-level smartphone markets, the chip is also designed for low-power servers, smart TVs and set-top boxes.
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Posted: 2016-02-08 @ 4:06am PT