The ARM9 is a great processor, and it’s suitable for a variety of applications; however, there are some limitations for designers seeking to update product designs with more robust functionality. That’s where the ARM Cortex-A8 comes into play. With the introduction of ARM Cortex-A9 devices, you may think the ARM Cortex-A8 processor is becoming obsolete, but this is certainly not the case.
In fact, TI introduced its newest ARM Cortex-A8 processor-based device today, and it packs high performance with on-board 3D graphics and touch screen controller, SATA, USB-PHY, dual Gigabit Ethernet, CAN and more — all for $5 and at 7 mW power dissipation. Including all this functionality on-chip can reduce printed circuit board space and BOM costs by $40. Processors such as these can enable portable, pocket-sized applications with robust features, such as portable navigation, handheld gaming and home and building automation. To enable ARM9 designers, or even other ARM microcontroller designers to easily migrate, this processor offers StarterWare to enable programming without an operating system, similar to a microcontroller. There’s also a free software development kit offering support for Android, Linux and Windows Embedded Compact 7. And for only $89, developers can get started on the newest credit-card-sized, open source platform from BeagleBoard.org, the BeagleBone . The TI AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessor powers the BeagleBone and enables designers to start development in five minutes with a single cable and 10-second Linux boot.
For more details about the announcements be sure to watch my interview from ARM TechCon last week:
Would you use a processor like this one to upgrade your ARM9 designs? What new functionality would you add?
Guest Partner Blogger:
Jake Alamat, Director of Marketing for Texas Instruments’ (TI) Sitara™ ARM® microprocessor (MPU) business unit. Prior to his current role, Jake served as a TI technical sales executive and a DaVinci™ digital media processor product marketing manager. Jake received his degree from Michigan State University and has been with TI for more than nine years.
ARM welcomes its wealth of Partners in the ARM Connected Community (CC) to submit guest blogs to be published on our multiple community blogs. If interested in participating please submit email inquiries to Tell.Us@arm.com.
The ARM Connected Community (CC) is an extensive ecosystem covering all aspects of ARM processor-based design, from chip implementation through to system and device design. The CC provides a platform for collaborative innovation, with multiple types of forums for members to work with one another, and with customers, to solve industry challenges, all with the purpose of enabling designers to focus on differentiating features and an accelerated time-to-market for ARM powered solutions.
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