ARM officials see the architecture's support of open software and applications as a major equalizer in the company's expanding competition against Intel. For example, the Linaro Group—of which Freescale is a member—is a consortium aimed at developing open-source software for the ARM architecture.
Freescale's QorIQ LS1043A is a fanless SoC with a frequency of 1.5 GHz and a power consumption as low as 6 watts, both key metrics for such edge networking equipment as branch routers, security appliances and SDN and NFV platforms, according to officials. It includes advanced virtualization hardware, leverages Freescale's trust architecture for flexible and secure cloud application updates, and through classification and load-balancing capabilities, can offload latency-sensitive applications for optimized local performance.
There's also a broad range of high-speed I/O, including 10 Gigabit Ethernet plus 5x 1GbE, 3x PCI Express, 3x USB 3.0 with PHYs and SATA 3.0. The chip also includes Freescale’s multi-protocol QUICC Engine module for integrated support of legacy wide-area and industrial interfaces.
Freescale will begin sampling the QorIQ LS1043A chip in the first quarter of 2015.
With the SABRE development system, cars can now more easily include automotive-grade Ethernet connectivity for everything from infotainment and instrument cluster to camera telematics and rear-seat entertainment. It will enable the real-time transportation of data around the car.
It leverages Freescale's i.MX 6 series application processors to accelerate and simplify the deployment of Ethernet Audio Video Bridging (AVB) to help connect a range of onboard multimedia nodes using the Ethernet components. Freescale also offers automotive-grade AVB Ethernet software stacks that will work with the development system's hardware, officials said.
"The newest SABRE AI development system brings Freescale's extensive networking expertise into the vehicle, delivering Ethernet AVB solutions that connect cars to their drivers, the cloud and the rest of the Internet of things," Dan Loop, automotive business development manager at Freescale, said in a statement. "In the Internet of things era, infortainment's primary role is to intelligently connect the car and all of its subsystems to the driver's world, enriching the driving experience and enhancing the safety of the vehicle."
The development system is sampling now, with broad availability planned for the first quarter of next year.