Intel has given a sneak peak of its upcoming Stellarton processor, a so-called configurable Atom chip due to hit the market in the first half of 2011. Intel Stellarton couples an Atom E600 SoC – the new “Tunnel Creek” range of chips also fresh to IDF 2010 and intended for embedded devices – with an Altera FPGA (field-programmable gate array).
An FPGA is a programmable logic chip that allows for greater flexibility by system designers to add non-standard I/O or acceleration. Intel says this will allow manufacturers more options in their products, together with greater differentiation, without necessarily losing out on the speed-to-market that Stellarton offers.
Intel Opens Software App Store, Offers New Intel Atom Chips
SAN FRANCISCO – (Business Wire) During keynote presentations today at the Intel Developer Forum, Intel Corporation executives outlined several software- and hardware-related efforts as the company intensifies its System-on-a-Chip (SoC) product plans based on the Intel® Atom™ processor family.
Amid predictions of billions of additional Internet-connected devices going online, Renée James, senior vice president and general manager, Intel Software and Services Group, and Doug Davis, vice president and general manager, Embedded and Communications Group, discussed the expansion of these processors into high-growth areas including netbooks, tablets, CE, embedded, and smart phones.
James: The Best Experiences Are Created on Intel Architecture
During her keynote at Moscone Center West in San Francisco, James outlined how tightly integrated and optimized software and platforms will deliver new levels of performance, along with fresh capabilities and the importance of creating an innovative experience across the personal computing continuum – from PCs to smart phones to tablets and cars, as well as any number of Internet-connected consumer devices.
Emphasizing a seamless experience across operating systems, James introduced general availability of the Intel® AppUpSM center netbook app store for consumers. The Intel AppUp center includes both free and paid apps for entertainment, social networking, gaming and productivity, optimized for a netbook’s mobility and screen size. To encourage consumers to try new applications, Intel AppUp provides “try before you buy” solutions, encouraging consumers to purchase apps they otherwise might not have. The launch was also marked by the availability of Adobe* AIR applications, as well as apps from companies including Accuweather*, Barnes & Noble*, Funkitron*, Gibson Guitars*, iWin*, Kaplan*, KONAMI*, and Lifetime*.
In an effort to reach netbook owners worldwide, James announced agreements with Best Buy*, UK-based Dixons* and India-based Croma* to outfit each retailer with the Intel AppUp center – pre-installed on netbooks the stores sell, as well as available for current netbook owners to download online. Similarly, James announced plans from ASUS* to ship its version of the Intel AppUp center on netbooks, the “asus app store,” starting in October.
During her keynote, James highlighted the Intel AppUp Developer Program, designed to drive innovative applications for end users and new revenue opportunities for independent developers and software vendors with programs such as the Intel Million Dollar Development fund. Rick Vanner from The Game Creators was recognized as winner of the “Most Innovative Application” in the Intel Atom Developer Challenge for his game titled, “Goals.” James also introduced the “On Intel AppUp” ISV identifier, designed to help developers promote their applications on Intel AppUp center.
James acknowledged seamless experiences are only part of the equation. Open operating systems – such as Intel and Nokia’s* MeeGo*, hosted by the Linux Foundation – allow developers to create, invent and innovate. Pointing to contributions from industry leaders, James discussed MeeGo ecosystem momentum, highlighting a variety of MeeGo-based devices and how third-party software developments and the upcoming MeeGo Web runtime, to be released in October, will make it easier to write applications for these devices. Internet TV pioneer Amino* also joined James onstage to demonstrate how the company is taking advantage of the flexibility and openness of MeeGo to deliver an innovative MeeGo-based smart TV solution.
Davis: Smart, Connected, Transformed Experiences
Discussing the important role the Intel Atom brand plays in delivering intelligent computing to connected devices everywhere, Davis outlined the complete Intel Atom processor line and how the company is delivering solutions based on Intel® architecture beyond the PC. Davis also emphasized how Intel Atom processor-based solutions can provide the ideal platform for Internet connectivity, intelligence, and ease of design with customer port of choice.
During his keynote, Davis launched “Tunnel Creek,” a new Intel® Atom™ E600 SoC processor series developed specifically for embedded applications such as in-vehicle infotainment systems for cars, smart grid devices and IP media phones. The SoC integrates additional capabilities onto the chip and features an open interconnect for added flexibility. Making it easier to design and customize with these new products, Vendors including OKI Semiconductor*, Realtek Semiconductor* and STMicroelectronics* will offer interconnect chipsets, and other companion silicon offerings from Dialog Semiconductor*and ROHM Co.* will regulate voltages and synchronize clocks, according to Davis.
Davis went on to unveil details of an upcoming new configurable Atom processor, codenamed “Stellarton.” The processor consists of the Atom E600 processor paired with an Altera* FPGA on a multi-chip package; which provides additional flexibility for customers who want to incorporate proprietary I/O or acceleration and enabling developers to differentiate their designs by reacting quickly to changing requirements.
Davis also introduced the Intel® Atom™ processor CE4200, formerly codenamed “Groveland,” which is designed to help seamlessly integrate the Internet experience with TV.
The SoC includes 3-D support, H.264 high-definition encoding capability for usage models such as “sync-and-go” between networked consumer electronics and portable devices, and multiple input stream support to enable the design of cost-effective home gateway appliances. To help address regulatory requirements, the SoC features smart power management capabilities that automatically help to turn off parts of the chip when not in use. A software development kit and familiar tools for integrating applications is also available which OEMs can re-use across products, cutting development time. Davis announced ADB*, Samsung*, Sagemcom* and Technicolor* plan to build set-top boxes based on the new SoC.
Microsoft*, Dell* and Visteon* joined Davis on stage during his keynote. Microsoft announced they have ported Windows* Embedded Standard 7 and Windows Media Center on Intel architecture and demonstrated prototype devices from Acer* and ASUS. Dell previewed their upcoming Intel Atom processor-based Dell convertible mobile device, expected to be available later this year. Visteon demonstrated the use of the E600 series processor in a next-generation automotive infotainment platform. Davis also highlighted mobility products based on the upcoming Intel SoC, codenamed “Oak Trail.” Touting Intel’s port of choice message, mobile device demonstrations included an ExoPC* running Microsoft Windows Embedded Standard 7, a WeTab* running MeeGo* and a Cisco Cius* running Android*.