ARM’s First 64-bit Processors
ARM will introduce its First 64-bit processors later in this year targeting on servers and high-end smart phones. They are also started to taking steps to build up software support for the s64-bit processor designs. Most of the smart phones and tablets that we use today use ARM processors. Now the company is trying to dominate its market as Intel dominate in server market. New ARM processors will be licensed to device makers and based on the ARMv8 architecture. These will be in market by 2014, after it will reach devices.
This processor could lead to the production of 64-bit smart phones which will give high performance compared to devices based on current ARM processor capable of addressing 32 bits. We can hope that this will support a wide range of s64-bit applications in Windows and Linux. ARM develops processor architecture and design and its licenses includes Texas Instruments, Qualcomm, Apple, Samsung and Nvidia. The company already has four s64-bit processor architectural licenses including AppliedMicro Circuits and Nvidia and hopes more will be announced in this year. There is a gap of few years between ARM introducing a processor and design being implemented in chips. For example, ARM introduced its Cortex-A9 processor in 2007 but it reached market in last year and they introduced their Cortex-A15 design in 2010, but it is expected to release in a few days later in this year.
Smart phones will need 64-bit high performance processors to run high demanding applications like multimedia as the device makers tends to add more memory blocks. Mobile devices mostly come with 2GB of memory and the ARM’s 32-bit processor that available today can support only up to 4GB, so a move to 64-bit is inevitable.
But in the case of servers 64-bit is a no-brainer as there are many 64-bit applications there. Servers requires many memory block and applications, all of these are written for 64-bit addressing. ARM introduces some server specific security and virtualization features in ARMv8 and the 64-bit processor will be backward compatible with applications written for previous ARM architectures. ARM is also building software support for its 64-bit processors to enhance the usage of their processor in servers. A version of Linux based Ubuntu OS has already been released and ARMv8 support is planned for Red Hat Linux.
Looking forward to server, ARM have a tough task to unseating Intel, which dominates in the market for years providing 32-bit processors. Intel also entered to smart phone fields this year by releasing 32-bit Medfield processor for smartphone. We can hope that Intel also come with 64-bit smartphone processor soon…
Just Wait and See. . .