LONDON – Market research firm Semicast Research Ltd. has said that ARM increased its lead over the MIPS, Power Architecture and x86 processor architectures in digital home applications in 2010. In addition the firm said that ARM's lead is "set to increase significantly in the medium term."
Broadcom and Samsung were the two leading suppliers of embedded processors to digital home applications in 2010, with IBM, Renesas Electronics and Texas Instruments completing the top five, according to Semicast (Waterlooville, England). Collectively, the top five suppliers accounted for almost half of the market between them, according to Semicast. And four out of the five are licensees strongly committed to the ARM architecture.
Semicast did not provide any quantitative data but argued that revenues for Power Architecture in digital home will stall after short-term boost from production of next-generation games consoles.
Intel's x86 architecture has been present in the home through the ubitquity of the personal computer but barely at all in traditional consumer electronics. The emergence of tablet and netbook computers provides an opportunity for x86 in the digital home, Semicast said, but also for ARM. The x86 will also do well in digital TVs and set-top boxes, where it would be taking some slots off MIPS and some from ARM. Semicast is forecasting revenues for x86 in the digital home to pass those for Power Architecture around 2016.
"ARM's future success in the digital home is forecast across most equipment types, but one of the leading areas for growth is set to be e-book readers, media tablets and netbooks," said Colin Barnden, principal analyst at Semicast Research, in a statement.
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