Texas Instruments launched their InstaSPIN-FOC (field-oriented-control) solution. InstaSPIN-FOC enables designers to identify, tune and fully control (through variable speeds and loads) any type of three-phase, synchronous or asynchronous motor in five minutes or less. InstaSPIN-FOC is available now on the production-ready, 90 MHz, 32-bit floating point Piccolo F2806xF microcontrollers. Prices start at $6.70 USD per 10 Ku. InstaSPIN-FOC will be featured on several other Piccolo microcontrollers in the near future.
MIPS Technologies introduced Release 5 (R5) of the MIPS architecture. R5 encompasses the MIPS32, MIPS64 and microMIPS instruction set architectures. The release incorporates important functionality including virtualization and SIMD (Single Instruction Multiple Data) modules. Key features of the MIPS architecture R5 specification are available for licensing now. Several MIPS licensees already have products in development. These features are expected to be added to MIPS processors in the coming year.
Freescale Semiconductor introduced four new devices for their QorIQ T1 and T2 families of 64-bit processor families. The new processors are the T1040, T1020, T1022, and T2081. The new Freescale devices are built on Power Architecture technology. All of the parts are pin-compatible. They are ideal for entry-level to mid-range networking, printing and security device applications. Samples of the T1040 device will be available in the third quarter of 2013. The other T1 and T2 devices will follow soon after.
Energy Micro is offering free samples of their EFM32 Gecko series microcontrollers (MCUs). The samples are available to qualified individuals worldwide. There is no additional charges for shipping, and lead time is only a few days. Energy Micro’s sampling program currently consists of the Gecko, Tiny Gecko, Leopard Gecko and Giant Gecko families. The EFM32 series is based on the ARM Cortex-M series of processors, and consisting of over 240 variants.
Analog Devices rolled out their new Blackfin ADSP-BF606, ADSP-BF607, ADSP-BF608 and ADSP-BF609 processors. The new ADI Blackfin processors all have two 500MHz cores, and have been optimized for low power operation. The ADSP-BF606, ADSP-BF607, ADSP-BF608 and ADSP-BF609 processors feature a new high-bandwidth switched fabric data movement infrastructure, a rich peripheral set and safety oriented features. The ADSP-BF60x processors are sampling now. Prices start at $15 in 1K quantities.
Manufacturers use multi-core processors for smartphone feature differentiation. As a result, multi-core smartphone applications processors gained strong traction in the third quarter of 2011. According to Strategy Analytics, part of this growth is because of strong holiday quarter demand for multi-core smartphones from major smartphone manufacturers.
According to Strategy Analytics, the global smartphone applications processor market grew to $2.24 billion in the third quarter of this year (Q3 2011). This is a 59% year-on-year growth. Qualcomm ranked first in the smartphone applications processor market with 49% of revenue share in the last quarter. Thanks to the ramp up of its Android business, Broadcom finally broke into the top-five vendor list for smartphone applications processors in the third quarter.
Texas Instruments introduced their Sitara AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors. The TI AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessor offers low power consumption, prolongs battery life, reduces heat emissions, and enables portable, pocket-sized, fanless applications. Pricing for the AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors start at $4.99 (in 100,000 unit quantities). Application-specific reference designs based on the AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors will be available later this year and into 2012.
The new ARMv8 architecture will feature a 64-bit instruction set. The ARMv8 architecture will expand the reach of ARM processor-based solutions into consumer and enterprise applications where extended virtual addressing and 64-bit data processing are required. The ARMv8 architecture specifications describing all aspects of the ARMv8 architecture are available now to partners under license. ARM will disclose processors based on ARMv8 during 2012, with consumer and enterprise prototype systems expected in 2014.
AVIX-RT, the company behind the AVIX RTOS, today announced AVIX support for the IAR Embedded Workbench for ARM (IAR EWARM). The ultra-fast AVIX RTOS, which targets all commercially available Cortex-M3 microcontrollers, is a perfect match for IAR EWARM. In addition to enabling AVIX based applications development, AVIX-RT provides a kernel aware plug-in for the IAR EWARM environment. This plug-in seamlessly integrates with IAR EWARM and can be controlled entirely from within this environment. Using IAR EWARM combined with the AVIX plug-in allows for interactive monitoring of the status of all AVIX kernel objects through the plug-in provided Graphical User Interface.