Globalfoundries Set to Make ARM Microprocessors

ARM and Globalfoundries Form Strategic Alliance

by Anton Shilov
10/06/2009 | 04:53 AM

Globalfoundries, a joint-venture between Advanced Micro Devices and Advanced Technology Investment Company, on Tuesday said that it had gained another strategic partner and customer. ARM, a leading designer of low-power microprocessors, will develop its chips in accordance with Globalfoundries’ design rules. As a result, the latter will be able to build ARM-based system-on-chips (SoCs) for various devices using 28nm high-K metal gate process.

 

“This relationship further advances our strong focus to partner with industry leaders in processor design to deliver manufacturing and technology excellence at the leading edge. This highly complementary partnership leverages ARM’s architectural leadership along with Globalfoundries advanced technology to enable the deployment of 28nm SoC designs with exceptional performance for next-generation consumer devices,” said Doug Grose, chief executive officer of Globalfoundries.

As a result of the partnership, Globalfoundries will be the first foundry to work with ARM to enable a 28nm Cortex-A9 SoC solution. This will allow the recently formed contract maker of semiconductors to offer high-performance ARM solutions for smartbooks, e-book readers or other applications that are more focused on performance and capabilities, but not the longest possible battery life.

The SoC enablement program, built around a full suite of ARM Physical IP, Fabric IP and Processor IP, will deliver customers advanced design flexibility. The collaborative efforts of the partnership will initially focus on enabling SoC products which use the low power and high performance ARM Cortex -A9 processor on Globalfoundries 28nm HKMG process.  The characteristics of Globalfoundries 28nm “Gate First” HKMG technology is optimized for high performance processing with minimal leakage making it an ideal choice for advanced mobile solutions. 

“This announcement reflects our business value and strategy of providing best in class processor implementation by marrying our own processor and physical IP with world class manufacturing semiconductor technology. This collaboration with Globalfoundries and their commitment to delivering leading edge technology makes them an ideal partner to accelerate the adoption of ARM processor based technology at 28nm,” said Warren East, chief executive officer of ARM.