With Apple having kicked off the 64-bit ARM (ARMH) mobile processor era this fall, many other companies are expected to launch 64-bit ARM-powered smartphones and tablets in 2014, notes the Micrprocessor Report's Mike Demler. That, in turn, should provide a boost to ARM's CPU royalty rates.
Already, Qualcomm has announced a mid-range 64-bit Snapdragon processor (features four ARM Cortex A53 cores) and Samsung has promised its next-gen Exynos mobile CPUs will be 64-bit. Also, Intel has demoed a tablet running on a 64-bit version of Android and the chip giant's (x86-based) Bay Trail Atom CPU.
Demler also expects strong demand for microcontrollers running on ARM's low-power Cortex-M CPUs (previous), which power a variety of intelligent embedded/wearable devices. At the same time, he notes ARM faces competition here from Synopsys' (SNPS) ARC CPU cores, as well as some smaller firms.
ARM has called the embedded market its biggest opportunity. The company recently bought Sensinode, a startup offering a software platform that provides Web connectivity for embedded devices.
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