ARM-Based Servers Exceed Expectations - Company

ARM: ARMv8 Servers on Track for 2014

by Anton Shilov
02/05/2013 | 11:59 PM



Performance and efficiencies of micro-servers based on system-on-chips with ARM architecture exceed expectations and there is enthusiasm towards those products among server makers. The commercial machines are on-track to emerge next-year, as planned, but the takeoff will hardly be really quick, even though the industry push towards energy-efficiency is growing.

“We are seeing increased momentum [on servers]. We are twelve months closer to 2014 and, therefore, the appearance of sensible, commercially available ARM-based servers, we are more certain the timescales are not actually changing. So we are transitioning from there being no servers to some servers, and 2014 is when it's going to be something that you can actually notice,” said Warren East, chief executive officer of ARM, during a conference call with financial analysts on Tuesday.

The market of server processors based on ARM’s 64-bit architecture with server-class enhancements will be pretty broad as numerous companies, including AMD, Applied Micro, Cavium, Calxeda, Marvell, Nvidia, Samsung and Qualcomm, are developing ARMv8-based system-on-chips aimed at emerging market of micro-servers.

While there are naturally no performance benchmarks of ARM Cortex-A53 or Cortex-A57 processors, it is noteworthy that the feedback ARM gets from its partners is generally positive. Apparently, micro-servers powered by ARM architecture clearly consume less power than x86 machines and can do the job at decent pace.

“In terms of the feedback that is coming back, so far the experimental work is actually exceeding expectations. The original theoretical stuff has been proved and more and that is fuelling some enthusiasm, and you saw some announcements in 2012 and I think we will see some more in 2013,” added Mr. East.

Micro-servers are currently developed by Dell (project Copper), Hewlett-Packard (project Moonshot), SeaMicro/AMD and Quanta.