XMOS, a specialist in multicore microcontrollers, and Silicon Labs have announced a technology partnership that will allow XMOS to integrate energy friendly ARM technology into its xCORE multicore microcontrollers to produce the next wave in programmable system-on-chip products (SoCs).
The partnership builds on the revolutionary, configurable xCORE multicore microcontroller architecture developed by XMOS, which allows customers to program in software the exact mix of peripherals and interfaces that they need and provides timing-precise execution of high level software code, with multiple 32bit processor cores available to share the work in parallel. By partnering with Silicon Labs XMOS will be able to add EFM32 Gecko technology – an energy-friendly ARM Cortex-M3 based MCU – to this architecture, creating the xCORE-XA (eXtended Architecture) family of products.
“This partnership creates a completely new category of programmable system on chip,” said Nigel Toon, XMOS CEO. “Working with Silicon Labs has allowed us to combine hardware levels of real-time performance, configurable peripherals from our configurable xCORE multicore microcontroller technology, together with the worlds most energy efficient ARM Cortex MCU technology from Silicon Labs, to create the next wave of programmable system-on-chip solution that, for the first time, allows a programmable technology to support low-energy battery-powered applications.”
“We have been working closely with XMOS over the last 12 months to help them bring this new class of product to market,” said Geir Forre, Vice President and General Manager of Silicon Labs’ Microcontroller Products. “It is exciting to see our EFM32 Gecko MCU technology being used in a leading multicore microcontroller architecture that delivers such flexibility. The result of this partnership between Silicon Labs and XMOS is a completely new type of programmable system on chip product that combines our industry-leading energy-friendly technology with a unique level of system configuration and performance.”
The new xCORE-XA family of products are the first xCORE devices to feature low-energy ARM Cortex-M3 based Gecko MCU technology developed by Energy Micro, recently acquired by Silicon Labs. The new chips allow customers to include ARM binary code within their xCORE designs and give them access to ultra-energy- efficient peripherals and I/O technology.
XMOS will provide a completely integrated development and debug environment for xCORE-XA as part of the xTIMEcomposer suite of development tools, allowing customers to create their system in C or C++ while taking advantage of the complete xSOFTip library of peripheral interfaces and functions. Designers will also be able to take advantage of existing Silicon Labs software tools to access code libraries and documentation for the ARM Cortex M3 processor core.