Adoption of ARM big.Little Technology Accelerates

February 26, 2013

Seven ARM® Partners Set to Launch Systems Based on ARM big.LITTLE™ Technology in 2013

CAMBRIDGE, UK, 26 FEBRUARY, 2013 – ARM today unveiled that its big.LITTLE processing technology has been adopted by many of the world’s leading mobile chip manufacturers.  Samsung and Renesas Mobile have already announced their plans, and subsequent implementations will be revealed during 2013 by five more companies including CSR, Fujitsu Semiconductor and MediaTek.  ARM big.LITTLE technology saves up to 70 percent of processor energy consumption in common mobile workload tasks, essential as the performance of the smartphone has jumped by 60x since 2000 and 12x since 2008, causing a massive increase in both content generation and consumption.

With tablets and smartphones out-shipping PCs and some 1 billion smartphones expected to ship in 2013, there is an explosive growth in smart mobile devices. Users now want a richer mobile experience, and it is low-power technologies like big.LITTLE that are making previously impossible experiences possible - such as instantaneous browsing, console-quality gaming and days, rather than hours, of battery life.

ARM big.LITTLE processing technology addresses the challenge of creating a system-on-chip (SoC) that meets the diverse needs of smartphones and other mobile devices. These conflicting demands require a smartphone to deliver high-performance when needed, while also extending the battery life. ARM big.LITTLE technology increases the dynamic performance range and energy efficiency of the mobile device while being completely transparent to the extensive range of applications available today for ARM processor-based platforms.

The big.LITTLE solution pairs the industry’s highest performance Cortex™-A15 processor, delivering up to 2x more performance than today’s smartphones, with the ultra-efficient Cortex-A7 processor and the ARM CoreLink™ Cache Coherent Interconnect (CCI-400), which together enable devices to seamlessly use the right processor for the right task based on performance requirements to deliver the best user experience and optimal energy usage. Future implementations may also pair the Cortex-A53 and Cortex-A57 processors.

This is complemented by ARM system-wide IP including: POP™ IP – core-hardening acceleration technology to streamline the implementation of big.LITTLE technology SoCs at advanced process technology nodes; Development Studio 5 (DS-5™) debug and analysis tools, and Active Assist design services.

“big.LITTLE processor technology builds on ARM low-power leadership and sets a new standard for high performance and energy-efficient processing. By reducing processor energy consumption by up to 70 percent on common workloads, big.LITTLE technology enables users to do more with their smartphones for longer,” said Simon Segars, president, ARM. “As smartphones and tablets continue to evolve into users' primary compute device, our partners are increasingly looking to ARM for innovations to help them deliver performance as well as the always-on, always-connected service their customers expect.”

“In addition to being suitable for smartphones and mobile computing devices, ARM big.LITTLE technology enables the development of powerful, yet low power consumption SoC for a broad range of embedded applications,” said Mitsugu Naito, executive vice president, Advanced Products BU, Fujitsu Semiconductor Limited. “Our SoC development expertise coupled with ARM big.LITTLE processing technology will provide the market with the combined performance and low power required for the next generation of innovative embedded products.”  

“big.LITTLE processing is the next logical extension after symmetric multi-processing to increase performance in a mobile device within the same power budget,” said Johan Lodenius, chief marketing officer, MediaTek. “We look forward to extending the capabilities of our extremely successful multi-core chipsets through the use of big.LITTLE processing, bringing new experiences to smartphones.”

“The mobile device market is demanding ever increasing performance and Renesas Mobile is well placed to deliver world-beating  smartphone platforms based on highly integrated communications processors and by application processors to meet this need,” commented Shinichi Yoshioka, senior executive vice president & chief operating officer, Renesas Mobile. “Our smart design approach and ARM’s big.LITTLE processing will provide the mobile device market with the combined performance and battery life it needs to satisfy the growth in mobile computing.”

“In an era when smartphones and tablets are evolving into the user’s primary compute device, Samsung’s Exynos 5 Octa, as the industry-first big.LITTLE enabled application processor, will drive innovation to bring outstanding user experience by handling diverse mobile workloads while also being optimized for power consumption,” said Tae-Hoon Kim, vice president of System LSI marketing, Device Solutions Division, Samsung Electronics.

“Data usage is dramatically increasing as the mobile internet becomes more accessible for customers. As such we’re seeing the consumption of HD content and multimedia services increase and new connected experiences emerge,” said Yves Maitre, senior vice president, Mobile Multimedia and Devices, Orange. “To make the most of the advances in high-speed mobile networks, operators and device manufacturers need to have high-performance, energy-efficient processing power, such as ARM Cortex processors and big.LITTLE technology, to continue the growth in the connected device market and create new experiences.”

“Battery consumption is an important factor with the use of smartphones, especially with the exponential growth of data use that we are seeing today. ARM Cortex processors and big.LITTLE processing have great potential to help increase smartphone performance and energy efficiency.” commented Von McConnell, Director at Sprint.


About ARM  
ARM designs the technology that is at the heart of advanced digital products, from wireless, networking and consumer entertainment solutions to imaging, automotive, security and storage devices. ARM’s comprehensive product offering includes RISC microprocessors, graphics processors, video engines, enabling software, cell libraries, embedded memories, high-speed connectivity products, peripherals and development tools. Combined with comprehensive design services, training, support and maintenance, and the company’s broad Partner community, they provide a total system solution that offers a fast, reliable path to market for leading electronics companies. Find out more about ARM by following these links:  

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