Nearly half of comms processors being shipped use Power cores. ARM
trails Power, x86 and MIPS with a small sliver of the comms market, but
that’s set to change.
“The Power architecture is going to be
losing a lot of share to ARM in the next several years,” predicted
Linley Gwennap, principal of market watchers The Linley Group (Mountain
View, Calif.). “These companies all say they can support two
architectures, but that gets expensive, so it will be interesting to see
how long they can afford it,” he said.
“Over the next two or
three years, you will see a good chunk of both [Power- and ARM-based
comms chips] being shipped, but in the long term ARM will be the
majority,” said Bustami.
LSI has aligned its rollout of the
ARM-based chips with a software transition going on at two or three of
the largest cellular basestation makers. “They develop a monster amount
of code that runs on those basestations,” Gregg Huff, LSI's chief
technologist, said in a recent interview. “We know exactly the
basestation products for which they want an ARM processor, and we are
100 percent lined up with them,” he said.