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ARM Cortex-A15 MPCore processor hits 2.5GHz


September 10, 2010

ARM has unveiled the latest addition to its Cortex A family of processors, the A15 MPCore,...

ARM has unveiled the latest addition to its Cortex A family of processors, the A15 MPCore, which offers up to 2.5GHz performance with a low energy profile

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The Eagle has landed. As portable devices sporting ARM's Cortex A9 1GHz powerhouse start to appear, the company has unveiled the next step in the evolution of its system-on-a-chip Cortex A architecture, the A15 MPCore processor. ARM-based chips currently provide the processing power for a host of mobile devices, from smartphones to tablets, and this latest development is claimed to deliver five times the performance of current solutions such as the Cortex A8, yet has a similar low energy footprint.

ARM sees its latest system-on-a-chip development being available in configurations ranging from 1GHz to 2.5GHz, and being extended to octo core designs and beyond for certain implementations. The scalable solution can provide processing power in everything from smartphones, tablets and televisions, right on up to high-end servers and wireless infrastructure. Like the rest of the Cortex A family of processors, the new baby is fully application compatible with existing software developer ecosystems like Google's Android, Adobe's Flash, Linux and Windows.

Other features include up to 4MB tightly-coupled low-latency L2 cache, multiple software environment capabilities including full hardware virtualization, the ability to support up to a terabyte of memory, and advanced memory correction. Up to 30 per cent less memory is required to store instructions, the inclusion of NEON technology is said to speed up the handling of multimedia and processing algorithms, and hardware support for floating point operations coming in the next generation of consumer products is provided.

Currently available to system manufacturers in 32nm and 28nm flavors, the A15's development roadmap is also reported to extend to 20nm. As to when consumers will begin to benefit from the new chip... the Cortex A9 was launched by ARM in October 2007, and we are only just now seeing it in new tablets – so don't hold your breath.

About the Author
Paul Ridden While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.   All articles by Paul Ridden
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