In October we saw the outlines of ARM's mBed OS which will be their Internet of Things offering and today Intel has revealed their own IoT Platform. The Register had a chance to sit in on the presentation this morning as they described the infrastructure and the partners that are onboard with Intel's solution. Intel did repeat their belief that their x86 Quark CPUs and other CPUs are every bit as power efficient as ARM while, carefully avoiding stating that they use the same amount of power. Of far more interest are the security features inherent in Intel's new infrastructure, they will be leveraging both the McAfee technology they now own to embed security features directly into the silicon and the technology that came with their purchase of Wind River to secure the communication channels between the actual devices, aka Edge Devices, and their server infrastructure. Expect to see more indepth information to be released in the near future but for now you can follow the links in The Register's story to catch up on what has been posted so far.
"Announced in the past few minutes at a morning presentation in San Francisco, the platform will describe how to hook up gizmos on the edge – the sensors, the wearables, the street lights, the air-con units, and so on – to the backend systems (cough, cough, Cloudera) processing collected information."
Here are some more Mobile articles from around the web:
- Intel announces IoT platform @ DigiTimes
- Intel platform looks to accelerate growth of Internet of Things @ The Inquirer
- Android 5.0 Lollipop @ The Inquirer
- Best tablet to buy this Christmas @ The Inquirer
- Nokia Lumia 830 @ The Inquirer
- Amazon Fire Phone @ The Inquirer
The little tiny power sipping
The little tiny power sipping SOC market that the marketing monkeys have labeled “The Internet of Things”(IOT) has been around much longer than the Buzz Word/phrase, just look in the average laptop, at the HD/SSD controller, the Ethernet controller, etc., and also the thumb drive’s controller, as well as other peripherals that are plugged into any PC/laptop/mobile device. For a few decades now there has been such SOCs in home appliances, TVs, and even the electric tooth brush, and 99 times out of a 100 the SOCs in these devices are of some form of RISC design. Think back to when the fabrication process nodes where much larger, and the power efficiency of the process node of the day was not as good, and the RISC designs, being much more efficient with their lower transistor counts, Reduced Instruction Set Computer/Computing were and are to this day, even on a larger processor fabrication node, still more power efficient at the job of powering the IOT, the IOT that has existed before the “IOT” new market that the marketing “profession” would have you believe was invented Just yesterday. Now Intel, having ignored the market for such devices, and having sold off its strong-ARM division, is trying to push its CISC designs into an already crowded market, and struggling to get its power usage for the higher transistor count CISC designs down using its fabrication process node advantage, a process node advantage that the RISC designs have never had, or needed for the market that RISC was developed for over 2 decades ago. There are basically a few RISC designs utilized in the original “IOT” market and the majority of SOCs are based around ARM, and MIPS, as well as a few others.
So Intel has not been able to buy its way into the mobile devices market, and now Intel wants to be in the server systems that will be required to connect up all these “IOT” devices, but even in the server side Intel is about to face some competition from another RISC design, a more powerful server grade RISC processor based around the IBM designed Power8 processors, a design/designs that are now being licensed to third party server CPU makers, via the OpenPower foundation, where the licensed IP market will utilize the Power8 RISC design’s very wide order superscalar processor, with 8 dynamically scalable processor threads per core, and much better than even than Xeon, at handling that massive server workloads that the “IOT” market will produce.
Intel is about to be faced with not just an Industry based around the ARM Holdings RISC design in mobile, but now there will be a licensed market built up around the Power8/Power* licensed by an entire industry, server grade SKU, that will begin arriving in 2015. The single ISA, and Single microarchitecture days are OVER forever, and have been supplanted by the licensed IP/ISA market, with no one supplier in control of the CPU/SOC supply chain, and the only thing that will be able to compete is buy going all in with the licensed market, and taking the licensable IP/ISAs and innovating with the right CPU/SOC microarchitecture/ISA for the job at hand. The days of comfy coasting with one CPU/SOC ISA, and even One GPU design are coming to a fast completion, one needs to only look at what Apple, and Nvidia are currently doing with their respective custom ARMV8 ISA designs, and see that this will be done in a similar fashion with the Power8/Power designs, and it’s not that the power8 will need to be tweaked to make it more wider order superscalar, like Apple and Nvidia did with their custom ARMv8 ISA running designs.
The core Power8 CPU design can/will be made into a multitude of SKUs, from laptop/PC, and servers at first, to maybe even Tablets in the future, the power8 being a RISC design, should make it able to scale well across the range of devices, and the power8 has something that the ARM designs currently lack, and that is SMT baked into the core. The only other RISC design that may offer any form of SMT, is MIPS, in the form of the Imagination Technologies’ Rouge Processor I6400 (optional) support for SMT, running the MIPS64 ISA, along with the PowerVR GPU. Img. Tec’s MIPS based RISC designs are going to be competing with ARM holdings offerings, in the SOC market, and the MIPS IP(Now owned by IT) can not be ignored going forward, especially where the HSA element is concerned, IT is a member of the HSA foundation, and GPGPU will be big in the RISC based server market, and even the supercomputer market, with IBM, Nvidia, and the OpenPower supercomputer contract just recently awarded, Nvidia, and IBM may not be HSA members but the concept of HSA has been around for decades, it’s just that AMD took the concept and incorporated it into their version of HSA, and HSA as a concept will be incorporated by all, who would not want the GPU, or other computing elements to not be able to be used for all manner of workloads, from spreadsheets to games.
Intel has for too long not had to innovate or die, but for sure the next few years will make or brake them as a dominating force in the devices marketplace, and if they do not get some competing form of RISC designs into their portfolio, either by creation or licensing, they are in for even more troubles. Having a lead in the fabrication process node can only go so far, and it is now up to the more innovative micro-architectural designs with some elements of HSA baked into SOCs/CPUs. All that money wasted on contra revenue, could have produced a custom RISC design, and much better graphics.
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