Ruminations on the electronics industry from David Manners, Senior Components Editor on Electronics Weekly.
ARM goes 64bit
ARM has announced the first two parts in its 64bit processor family today – the A-53 and A-57.
“The A-57 delivers three times the performance of today’s processors with the same power budget and the A-53 delivers four times the power efficiency of today’s mobile phones,” says Noel Hurley, vp of ARM’s processor division.”
Silicon is expected in 2013/14 with devices out in 2014/15, says Hurley.
‘It’s been a rare opportunity to start with a clean sheet of paper to develop a new architecture,” adds Hurley,” we paid particular attention to power efficiency. Instead of just adding another 32-bits we have stripped out complexity and made it a very power-efficient architecture.”
Licensees of A-57 and A-53 are Broadcom, Calxeda, AMD, HiSilicon, Samsung and ST.
Being soft IP, A-53 and A-57 can be made on 28nm and 20nm planar processes at TSMC, Globalfoundries and Samsung, on the upcoming 16nm TSMC finfet process and 14nm Globalfoundries’ finfet process and on the 28nm Globalfoundries FD-SOI process.
The A-53 has a smaller die size than the A-9 on the same process geometry and is therefore cheaper to make. It also has better power-efficiency and higher performance than the A-9. ARM says it is the smallest 64bit processor on the planet.
As well as servers, the A-50s are for future superphones, mobile computers tablets and anything looking at larger data-sets.
The A-53 and A-57 can work together as a big-LITTLE implementation or can be used separately.
Where ARM’s partners have silicon of the A-15/A-7 bigLITTLE combinations a 50% improvement in power consumption is being achieved.
“bigLITTLE allows delivery of an incredible increase in performance while staying within the power budget of a consumer device,” says Hurley.Tags: broadcom, division 22, mobile phones, noel, power efficiency