October 31, 2011 -- The new Texas Instruments, Inc. (TI) ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors, starting at $5 and consuming as little as 7mW of power, provide low power consumption, prolonging battery life and reducing heat emissions to enable portable, pocket-sized, fan-less applications.
Offering developers high performance with advanced 3D graphics capabilities, touchscreen controller and sophisticated peripherals all on a single chip reduces printed circuit board (PCB) space, complexity and bill-of-materials (BoM) costs by as much as $40 for smaller-sized applications such as portable navigation, handheld gaming and educational devices, home and building automation and mor
"The new Sitara AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors let designers explore infinite possibilities for upgrading their systems without increasing cost or power consumption," said Dipti Vachani, General Manager, Sitara ARM microprocessors, TI. "Moreover, you can begin development with an $89 open-source development board or complete evaluation module."
Sitara AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors features
- ARM Cortex-A8 with NEON at up to 720MHz offers robust performance and operating system (OS) support to enable application processing, network connectivity, user interface (UI) and system control.
- Flexible power-management options, such as TI's TPS65910, helps keep power levels as low as 7mW in standby and 700mW in active mode and enables various portable and fan-less designs.
UI and 3D capabilities
- Touch screen controller
- 3D graphics accelerator (20 million triangles per second) and display controller
- Integration of flexible peripherals
- Gigabit Ethernet two-port switch
- Dual USB + PHYs
- Cryptographic acceleration
The AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors offer multiple development tools. Designers can quickly and easily begin development with the $89 BeagleBone, the newest, best-value open source hardware platform from the BeagleBoard.org community. Designers can also use the full-featured AM335x evaluation module (EVM) with a 7-inch LCD touch screen and access to all peripherals for $995. The EVM includes TI's WL1271 single-chip 802.11b/g/n + Bluetooth technology in a broadly available module and is the first widely available platform to enable Wi-Fi Direct. The combination of the AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors and proven WL1271 solution provides a very low-cost, high-performance wireless connectivity platform.
Software supports popular OSes and enables microcontroller-like programming
Accompanying both the BeagleBone and full-featured EVM are a host of software solutions:
- TI EZ software development kit, allowing demo in minutes and development in less than an hour.
- Support for Linux, Android and Windows Embedded Compact 7 operating systems.
- Compatible security solutions and real-time operating systems (RTOSes) available from third parties, enabling further product customization and simplifying development.
- StarterWare software stack allowing developers to program these microprocessors like a microcontroller, without requiring an operating system.
Together, these software offerings permit developers to scale the ARM platform, from MCUs to ARM9 devices, ARM Cortex-A8 devices, ARM + DSP devices, as well as video processors and DSPs, saving time and cost.
Pricing and Availability
Developers can begin evaluation of the AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors with the $89 BeagleBone from BeagleBoard.org. They can also develop on TI's full-featured EVM (TMDXEVM3558) for $995, available December 2011. TI's Linux EZ SDK and support for Android 2.2 are available for free download from TI in December 2011 with Windows Embedded Compact 7 support coming in 1Q2012. Support for QNX, Mentor and Wind River third-party, RTOSes will be available starting this quarter. These devices (XAM3358ZCE and XAM3359ZCZ) are sampling today. Prices for the AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors begin at $4.99 (in 100,000 unit quantities). Application-specific reference designs based on the AM335x ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessors will be available later this year and into 2012.
Go to the Texas Instruments, Inc. (TI) website to find additional information.