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ARM Holdings plc (ARM) is a semiconductor and software design company with its head office in Cambridge, England. Its largest business is designing processors (CPU) bearing the ARM name, although it also designs software development tools under the DS-5, RealView and Keil brands, systems and platforms, system-on-a-chip (SoC) infrastructure and software. It is considered to be market dominant in the field of processors for mobile phones (smartphones or otherwise) and tablet computers and is arguably the best-known of the 'Silicon Fen' companies.[1]

Processors based on designs licensed from ARM, or designed by licensees of one of the ARM instruction set architectures, are used in all classes of computing devices from microcontrollers in embedded systems – including real-time safety systems (cars' ABS),[2] smartTVs (Google TV) and all modern smartwatches (such as Qualcomm Toq) – up to smartphones (such as all Apple's iPhones), tablets (such as all Apple's iPads), laptops (some Chromebook versions), desktops[3][4] (first use was in the Acorn Archimedes), servers[5] and supercomputers/HPC.[6][7][8]

ARM's Mali line of graphics processing units (GPU) are used in laptops (some Chromebook versions), Android tablets (over 50% market share[9]) and smartphones (such as some versions of Samsung's products up to the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 tablet and Samsung Galaxy S 5 smartphone) and smartwatches (Samsung Galaxy Gear). It is third most popular in mobile devices.[10]

Systems, including iPhone smartphones, frequently include many chips, from many different providers, that include one or more licensed ARM cores, in addition to those in the main (ARM-based) processor;[11] Chips for all common network related technologies: Bluetooth, WiFi and broadband[12] (and non-network related functions such as with Apple M7) in smartphones, in addition to corresponding equipments such as Bluetooth headsets,[13] up to newest 802.11ac routers[14] and provider's cellular LTE.[15]

ARM's main CPU competitors include Intel (Atom), Imagination Technologies (MIPS) and AMD (that will also sell 64-bit server processors[16]), and its GPU competitors include Imagination Technologies (PowerVR), Qualcomm (Adreno) and increasingly Nvidia and Intel. Qualcomm and Nvidia combine their GPUs with an ARM licensed CPU while Intel doesn't.

See also

External links


  1. ARMv8-R Architecture Webpage; ARM Holdings.
  2. Building Windows for the ARM processor architecture
  3. ARM and Canonical to Bring Full Ubuntu Desktop Experience to Low-Power, ARM Technology-Based Computing Devices ARM, 13 November 2008
  4. Red Hat Deploys ARM-Based Servers for Fedora Project Eweek, 15 May 2013
  5. nCore HPC Rolls Out BrownDwarf ARM DSP Supercomputer Inside HPC, 17 June 2013
  6. Nvidia: ARM supercomputer to be more efficient than x86 EE Times, 12 June 2011
  7. Smartphone chips may power servers, researchers say PC World, 25 May 2013
  8. Multimedia - Graphics Processing from ARM
  9. Template:Cite press
  10. Template:Cite press
  11. Template:Cite press