Subject: General Tech, Systems, Mobile | February 9, 2012 - 09:36 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: WOA, windows, arm
Microsoft has been ridiculously cagey about the discussion of Windows 8 on ARM. At last month’s CES trade show there was a disturbingly low amount of information. Available information about Windows on ARM was in abrupt demonstrations performed by Microsoft spokespeople or behind glass display cases.
Today Steven Sinofsky of Microsoft released quite a bit of information -- over 8500 words even if you exclude image captions and section titles -- about Windows on ARM (officially named “WOA”). Feel free to read for yourself at MSDN’s blog, or keep on reading for our brief summary.
Actually most of the blog post is about building Windows 8 on ARM.
We reported that Windows on ARM has been classified as stable for approximately two weeks at this point. Our questions about WOA availability were answered, and more: WOA is intended to be released simultaneously as Windows 8 for x86-64. WOA will also not be available standalone and you must purchase a device with it pre-installed.
From the chipset through the firmware and drivers, the work is optimized to be great for WOA. Partners are working hard on creative industrial designs and form factors that will include more than tablets. These are all under development today.
The PC will come with the OS preinstalled, and all drivers and supporting software. WOA will not be available as a software-only distribution, so you never have to worry about which DVD to install and if it will work on a particular PC.
Applications written for Windows on ARM can only be distributed through Windows Update or the Windows Store. Being an advocate of the open PC I find this quite unnerving as it quickly creates situations where art becomes at the mercy of the platform owner similar to what is seen on the consoles. That said, it also seems to suggest that Microsoft is not intending WOA to be fill all the roles of a typical PC.
Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and OneNote will be available for WOA as Office 15. The typical file explorer and desktop will also be available for WOA. Mouse and keyboard support is also available for Windows on ARM. These will all be available within Office so the user can control there their files will be stored.
Windows 8 for x86-64 will be released as an open Beta at the end of the month. Microsoft will also release, by invite only, devices for developers. The intent of course is to give developers time to create applications for WOA. You should not expect those devices to be any more than development tools designed to prevent day-one apps from being developed in a single day.
Subject: General Tech | February 9, 2012 - 12:07 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: arm, Intel, amd, atom, low power, cortex, Medfield, hondo
To revive an old buzzword some of you may have forgotten, ubiquitous computing is the current holy grail of the computing industry. If AMD, Intel, ARM and to a lesser extent NVIDIA, can get the market to prefer one of their low power processors over the competitions there is a lot of money to be made in the mobile market. The way that they are approaching the market is very different however. In Intel's case they pride themselves on the general computation power of their upcoming Medfield processor though that comes at the cost of power consumption and less graphics capabilities. AMD. like Intel, are trying to reduce the power consumption of their chips and though they lag behind in general CPU performance the graphics capabilities are generally considered superior.
Then there is ARM, which is striving to overcome its reputation of providing chips low in power, both electrically and computationally. Their latest Cortex processors are certainly display a vast improvement in performance compared to previous generations. The power consumption may have increased but not to the levels of consumption of the Intel and AMD chips. Intel and AMD need to continue lowering their power consumption without sacrificing power while ARM needs to increase performance without impacting the power consumption before anyone can be considered a clear winner. There is another consideration which DigiTimes points out; right now ARM is winning the price war which could be every bit as important as power consumption or computational power.
"While Intel and AMD have been making efforts to develop low power processors for use in smartphones and tablet PCs, they cannot compete with solutions from ARM in terms of price, according to notebook makers."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Android's Chrome finish comes too late for Flash coating @ The Register
- Transactional Synchronization in Haswell @ Intel
- Google touts website prefetching with Chrome 17 @ The Inquirer
- AMD announces FirePro V3900 for entry-level professional graphics @ DigiTimes
- Windows 8 confirmed for February 29th (Beta Queue) @ Kitguru
- Ninjalane Podcast - Basic Casemodding Listener Mailbag Interview with a Top Overclocker
- Samsung NX 200 Review @ TechReviewSource
- Weekly Giveaway #21: Antec LanBoy Air and High Current Pro 750W Power Supply @ eTeknix
Subject: Editorial, General Tech | February 2, 2012 - 03:11 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: ssd, sandforce, radeon, podcast, patriot, nvidia, Intel, gtx, arm, amd, 7950
PC Perspective Podcast #187 - 02/02/2012
Join us this week as we talk about our thoughts on Ultrabooks, the Radeon HD 7950, ASUS DirectCU GTX cards, and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
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- MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Josh Walrath, Jeremy Hellstrom, and Allyn Malvantano
This Podcast is brought to you by
- 0:00:40 Introduction
- 1-888-38-PCPER or firstname.lastname@example.org
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
- 0:01:20 Ultrabooks: Intel Knows What's Good For You
- 0:08:30 Patriot Pyro and Wildfire SSD Review - IMFT Async vs. Toshiba Toggle-mode Flash
- 0:14:20 AMD Radeon HD 7950 3GB Graphics Card Review
- 0:25:50 This Podcast is brought to you by
, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!
- 0:26:38 Asus DirectCU II Roundup: ENGTX560, ENGTX570, and ENGTX580 Review
- 0:40:35 Raspberry Pi Linux Computer Will Have Fast GPU For The Price
- 0:44:20 If you thought Intel did well wait until you see ARM
- 0:47:00 AMD 7700 and 7800 Release Dates Leak To Web
- 0:51:20 Live Blog: AMD Financial Analyst Day
- 0:52:20 Hardware / Software Pick of the Week
- Josh: And it is on sale! $770 off!
- Allyn: Corsair Force 3 - very good pricing.
- 1-888-38-PCPER or email@example.com
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
Subject: General Tech | February 1, 2012 - 12:24 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: RISC, quarterly earnings, earnings, arm
For total dollar revenue over 2011 the only company that can touch Intel's earnings would be Apple, who actually contributed to Intel's growth over the past year. When you talk about percentage growth over last year however ARM actually beat Intel's 21% growth, although not by much. Their pre-tax growth approached 50% for the year and they blew away analyst's predictions both quarterly and yearly. This probably has to do with the 2.2 billion ARM-powered chips sold globally over the past year, not just the new chips that power your phones and tablets but also chips they've been making for a long time which appear in vehicles, appliances and toys. ARM's way of doing business is different from Intel who prefer to tie you into an all Intel hardware or no Intel hardware contract, ARM is happy if their chips co-exist with others on a device; they just want a chip in there. As The Register points out, this flexibility as well as the release of an ARM compatible version of Windows 8 could make the coming years rather interesting.
"ARM, the eponymous designer of the chip architecture, had a stonking 2011 with revenue and profits up as it tightened its hold on both embedded and generic computing.
Revenue for the last quarter of 2011 was up by more than 20 per cent on the previous year, to £137.8m, while profit before tax jumped more than twice that percentage to £69m. For the whole of 2011 the numbers are very similar, revenue hitting £491.8m ($773m) and profit topping £229.7m ($362m), rather better than analysts had predicted."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Radeon HD 7950 launches, beats GTX 580; HD 7990 and 7870 launch date leaked @ ExtremeTech
- SeaMicro packs 2TB of DRAM into a 10U @ SemiAccurate
- Microsoft ditches plug-ins for Internet Explorer 10 in Metro @ The Register
- AMD Leo DirectX 11 Demo Released @ NGOHQ
- Using Google documents as a web proxy @ Hack a Day
- Win a Dell XPS with OC3D & Dell Outlet
Subject: General Tech | January 30, 2012 - 04:24 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: windows 8, arm
I will be honest with you; I was not, personally, paying attention to Windows 8 let alone Windows on ARM. I often like to push the newest and obscure releases of Windows falling prey to both Windows XP 64-bit as well as the not-nearly-as-bad-as-people-make-it-out-to-be Windows Vista; Windows 7 seems to suit my needs and I do not expect to push past it any time soon unless something shows me otherwise. If you, on the other hand, were awaiting Windows on ARM to be stable -- which frankly I thought it already happened, but apparently not -- and on their way to developers? Not now.
Intel's starting to drop bricks?
Brooke Crothers of CNET reports Windows 8 for ARM processors has reached a stable build and is expected to be in the hands of developers in February. Despite the seemingly late deployment, one source did not expect Windows 8 on ARM to be released later than the x86 version; that source also admitted to not being given information from Microsoft to support that assertion. I am skeptical of that source, to say the least, but I keep an open mind.
As for legacy applications, Microsoft Office has not been seen running on ARM devices. Intuitively, if Office were to be fully operational on ARM then Microsoft would likely have shown it off by now. Whether or not intuition holds true is yet to be seen, though CNET heard from a source of a source that Office is “running fine” on ARM.
Despite Microsoft’s demonstrations of Windows 8, there is little information circulating about Windows 8 on ARM. Even at CES, there was little that was shown to sate the questions asked about the new platform. Perhaps once it is in the hands of developers we might discover more concrete information?
Subject: General Tech | January 20, 2012 - 01:06 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Medfield, Intel, arm
With Medfield being a large part of CES 2012, there is a currently a big focus on Intel's foray into the mobile world. One company that does not seemed worried is ARM who have been, and continue to be, the largest supplier of processors for mobile applications. DigiTimes spoke to Jeff Chu of ARM who stated that his company does not perceive Intel as a threat to their market share. That perception is largely based on the limited product lines that Intel currently offers, as compared to ARM who offers a very wide variety of platforms.
On the other hand intel, even with record breaking income, might be a little concerned about ARM. With Windows on ARM arriving to the market some time in the near future Intel could see erosion in their desktop business, as for that matter so could AMD. As well with companies like Caxeda creating rack mount servers utilizing ARM processors both of the major server chip suppliers should probably be a little worried. After all there are about four ARM processors per person on the planet currently.
"ARM is not under competitive pressure from Intel's move into processor platforms for handheld devices, because Intel does not let clients know the value of adopting its platforms while ARM has provided different application platforms for different partners for market segmentation, according to director of consumer, client computing, Jeff Chu for ARM.
Chu pointed out that ARM has already developed products to correspond to Intel's Medfield platform, and since Intel is currently only promoting one platform, ARM's different application platforms allow the company to achieve its goal of market segmentation."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Intel beats Street with record year @ The Register
- What Are The Best 10 Linux Desktop Apps? @ Linux.com
- Mobile malware is about to explode, users need education @ The Inquirer
- Acer, Asustek, Lenovo to offer Thunderbolt ultrabook PCs in 2Q12 @ DigiTimes
- Sikorsky plays killer copter sim on SGI Altix UV 1000 @ The Register
- Dell, Nvidia insider traders nabbed by Feds @ The Register
- 2012 CES: Roccat @ OCIA
- CES 2012 Coverage @ OCC
- 2012 CES: SilverStone @ OCIA
- CES 2012 Day 3 & 4 Coverage @ Neoseeker
- Of CES 2012 and missed expectations @ The Tech Report
- 2012 Competition MADNESS @ OC3D
Subject: General Tech | January 12, 2012 - 08:15 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: Raspberry Pi, linux, computer, arm
The UK based charity behind the Raspberry Pi Linux computer, the Raspberry Pi Foundation, announced in a blog post that the two ARM 11 powered Linux computers have entered the manufacturing stage and are that much closer to going on sale. The two models, Raspberry Pi A and B, will be $35 and $25 respectively. The difference between the tow models is that the cheaper model A board has half the RAM at 128 MB and lacks an Ethernet port. Both models have an HDMI and analog RCA video output along with a USB port to attach a mouse and keyboard.
The charity elaborated that while they tried to find a manufacturing partner in the UK, they ran into cost and logistical issues. Specifically, tax and import laws in the UK requires any electronic components to be subject to import tax, making importing components into the UK and manufacturing it from within an expensive proposition. The Raspberry Pi Foundation was able to find a manufacturing plant that could produce computers for them at or above break even prices; however, they would not be able to produce enough units to meet demand- only a few hundred instead of the estimated 10,000 units the charity wanted. Further, because the manufacturing plants could only produce a few hundred units a month the release date would be months away instead of the 3 to 4 week turnaround offered by Chinese and Taiwanese manufacturing plants.
In the end, the charity chose to produce the Raspberry Pi computers outside of the UK in order to keep costs down and meet the release and quantity expectations. They will then use the savings to invest in further research and development and expanding the organization.
Are you guys going to purchase the Raspberry Pi computer when it comes out?
Subject: Systems | January 9, 2012 - 04:03 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: arm, cortex-a9, Tegra 2, compulab, thin-slice, nettop
If you need only moderate processing power and need a small footprint then CompuLab might just have the system for you. Their Trim-Slice nettop is powered by NVIDIA's Tegra 2 a 1GHZ dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 and 1GB of DDR2 RAM, with a SATA HDD. It has four USB 2.0 ports, WiFi and a wired NIC, two HDMI ports and a S/PDIF in port, which ought to handle what you need from this system. It comes with Ubuntu 11.04 for ARMv7, which Phoronix points out is obsolete and recommends updating to a newer version. The system is comparable to Atom based machines in performance and in price, a basic 1GB system is $213USD while the model Phoronix reviewed would cost you about $100 more. Read on to see how it did in the benchmarks.
"The Trim-Slice from CompuLab is a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 nettop based on the NVIDIA Tegra 2 platform. In this article are our first Ubuntu benchmarks of this low power, fan-less desktop with comparative figures to Intel's older platforms and the OMAP4660-based dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 PandaBoard ES."
Here are some more Systems articles from around the web:
- ARM Cortex-A9 PandaBoard ES Benchmarks @ Phoronix
- Building a BitTorrent Rig with the Zotac ZBOX Nano Plus @ Legit Reviews
- Acer Aspire Z5771-UR31P Review @ TechReviewSource
- HP Omni 120-1024 Review @ TechReviewSource
- How To Build A Windows Home Server @ HardwareHeaven
Subject: Mobile | January 7, 2012 - 02:30 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: windows 8, transformer prime, tablet, eee memo pad, CES, asus, arm
CES isn't until next week, but many companies are talking product announcements beforehand. According to Engadget, a spokesperson at a company event in Taipei promises several mobile devices from ASUS that are coming out this year (some of which may make an appearance at CES).
Among the promises devices, Asus hinted at a version of the Transformer Prime with a 3G modem and possibly an improved AGPS chip. Be sure to check out our review of the Transformer Prime to get an idea of what you are looking at for the new version (though obviously minus the 3G). Further, the Eee Memo Pad, a 7" tablet running Android and used primarily in a vertical orientation (judging from where the ports are located). It packs a 1.2 GHz dual core Snapdragon ARM based processor, 3G and WiFi, up to 64 GB of internal storage, and a resolution of 1280x800.
Finally, although not quite ready in time for CES (or will it be?), Asus is committed to bringing an ARM powered Windows 8 tablet to the market. Allegedly, the new Windows 8 device will resemble the physical dimensions and look of the current Transformer Prime and will be released towards the end of this year. It will be interesting to see how the quad core Tegra chip handles Windows 8.
PC Perspective's CES 2012 coverage is sponsored by MSI Computer.
Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!
Subject: Processors, Mobile | January 5, 2012 - 01:47 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: WonderMedia, PRIZM WM8950, SoC, arm, cortex-a9
Taipei, Taiwan, January 5, 2012 -WonderMedia Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of energy-efficient, feature-rich system-on-chip platforms, today announced the WonderMedia PRIZM WM8950 SoC.Combining a highly energy-efficient ARM Cortex-A9 core running at 800MHz with advanced graphics and stunning 1080p video playback capabilities, the WonderMedia PRIZM WM8950 further extends WonderMedia's leadership in the fast-growing Android media tablet market.
Prizm WM8950The next generation WonderMedia PRIZM platform and software suite provides customers an easy migration path to a Cortex-A9 SoC and offers support for the latest Android 4.0 and Windows CE 7.0 operating systems. With its high-performance, and feature-rich design, the WM8950 is also optimized for a wide range of innovative system design applications, including smartbooks, Smart TV, SmartStream for wireless display and multimedia streaming, networked projectors, digital signage, and thin clients.
"Our line of PRIZM platforms has spurred the explosive growth in the Android media tablet market," commented Tzumu Lin, President and CEO, WonderMedia Technologies, Inc. "The new WM8950 delivers greater computing power and richer multimedia experiences to meet the ever growing global demand for affordable smart mobile devices."
PRIZM WM8950 Highlights:
- 800MHz ARM Cortex-A9 processor
- ARM Mali-400 3D graphics Processor
- Multi-standard 1080p video decoding engine
- H.264 video encoding
- DDR3/LPDDR2 DRAM interface
- Multiple video interface including HDMI, LVDS, and DVO
- Flexible networking and peripheral interface
- Advanced hardware security engine
- Android 4.0 and Windows CE7.0 support