CAMBRIDGE, UK, Sept. 24, 2014 - ARM has unveiled a new 32-bit Cortex-M processor that delivers double the compute and digital signal processing (DSP) capability of today's most powerful ARM-based MCUs. The ARM Cortex-M7 is targeted at high-end embedded applications used in next generation vehicles, connected devices, and smart homes and factories. Early licensees of the Cortex-M7 processor include Atmel, Freescale and ST Microelectronics.
"The addition of the Cortex-M7 processor to the Cortex-M series allows ARM and its partners to offer the most scalable and software-compatible solutions possible for the connected world," said Noel Hurley, general manager, CPU group, ARM. "The versatility and new memory features of the Cortex-M7 enable more powerful, smarter and reliable microcontrollers that can be used across a multitude of embedded applications."
The Cortex-M7 achieves an impressive 5 CoreMark/MHz1. This performance allows the Cortex-M7 to deliver a combination of high performance and digital signal control functionality that will enable MCU silicon manufacturers to target highly demanding embedded applications while keeping development costs low. Expected uses of Cortex-M7 include smart control systems employed in a range of applications such as motor control, industrial automation, advanced audio, image processing, a variety of connected vehicle applications and other Internet of Things (IoT) uses.
Enabling faster processing of audio and image data and voice recognition, the benefits delivered by the Cortex-M7 processor will be immediately apparent to users. The core also provides the same C-friendly programmer's model and is binary compatible with existing Cortex-M processors. Ecosystem and software compatibility enables simple migration from any existing Cortex-M core to the new Cortex-M7. System designers can therefore take advantage of extensive code reuse which in turn offers lower development and maintenance costs.
In 2013, ARM's partners shipped some 3 billion ARM-based microcontrollers, making it the industry-leader in its class.
ARM Cortex-M7 features:
"The Cortex-M7 is well positioned between Atmel's Cortex-M based MCUs and Cortex-A based MPUs enabling Atmel to offer an even greater range of processing solutions," said Reza Kazerounian, senior vice president and general manager, microcontroller business unit, Atmel. "Customers using the Cortex-M-based MCU will be able to scale up performance and system functionality, while keeping the Cortex-M class ease- of-use and maximizing software reuse. We see the ARM Cortex-M7 addressing high-growth markets like IoT and wearables, as well as automotive and industrial applications that can leverage its performance and power efficiency."
"Freescale Cortex-M7-based solutions dramatically extend MCU performance, opening new opportunities for our business," said Geoff Lees, senior vice president and general manager, MCU group, Freescale. "Our solutions will enable significant innovation and system-level efficiency in areas such as motor control, industrial automation and power conversion. These are rapidly growing markets where the high performance of the Cortex-M7 core eliminates the need for additional DSPs and microcontrollers."
"Offering customers more intelligence and processing power on our STM32 microcontrollers is a major objective for ST, and the Cortex-M7 delivers that impressively," said Daniel Colonna, microcontrollers marketing director, STMicroelectronics. "The Cortex-M7 core supports upwardly-scalable compatibility with our existing wide range of 500 Cortex-M STM32 microcontrollers, associated tools and software ecosystem, allowing developers to rapidly adopt our next-generation STM32 Cortex-M7-based MCUs."
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1 CoreMark 1.0 : IAR Embedded Workbench v7.30.1 --endian=little --cpu=Cortex-M7 -e -Ohs --use_c++_inline --no_size_constraints / Code in TCM - Data in TCM