14/03/2012

ARM introduces new 32bit CPU

ARM is known for it's big processors that are licensed to all and sundry for inclusion in products like the newly announced Apple iPad3 which uses an A5X CPU (dual core CPU cores running at 1GHz with a 4 core GPU) and many other licensees including Qualcomm for their Snapdragon range etc. ARM are also big into micro controllers that sit in the myriad of deices that require some form of control (toys, white goods, dumb phones etc), these also tend to be very low power devices. ARM's latest version is the Cortex-M0+ or Flycatcher which uses 9uA/MHz on a very cheap to fabricate 90nm process (Intel's latest CPUs are all on 22nm substrates) and use around 1/3 of the power required by existing 8 and 16bit CPU architectures. The Cortex-M0+ is software backwards compatible with the older Cortex-M0 range of processors so all existing software can be used. This is a potentially huge market and Ericcson estimate that there will be 50bn units with these types of processor in them by 2020 - which will make up the internet of things. ARM will also offer low power Bluetooth and other connectivity products which can be paired with the processors.

13/03/2012

Ofcom proposes to vary Everything Everywhere's 1800MHz license

Ofcom the regulator covering media, broadcasting, telecoms, radio and postal services has announced a consultation on the proposal to amend Everything Everywhere's (EE) 1800MHz licenses to allow the use of LTE and WiMAX technologies. The original license only allowed 2G (GSM, GPRS, EDGE) and then 3G services (UMTS). If this variation is granted, it's likely that EE will be the first mobile network operator to offer LTE national services in the UK and this may distort the market, though Ofcom do not believe this to be true. The consultation closes on 17 April 2012 and stakeholders can respond on-line.