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LSI Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2013 Results

LSI Corporation (NASDAQ: LSI) today reported results for its fourth quarter ended December 31, 2013. On December 15, 2013, LSI entered into a definitive agreement with Avago Technologies Limited (NASDAQ: AVGO) under which Avago has agreed to acquire LSI for $11.15 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $6.6 billion. In anticipation of this transaction, which is expected to close in the first half of 2014, LSI will not issue financial guidance for the upcoming quarter or conduct a fourth quarter results conference call. LSI has also discontinued its quarterly dividend and stock repurchases.

"We ended the year on a strong note, with solid quarterly results and the announcement of Avago's proposed acquisition of LSI," said Abhi Talwalkar, LSI's president and CEO. "Our employees did a great job in the quarter and in the year, bringing several exciting new products to market and expanding our capabilities to better serve our growing customer base in flash storage, datacenters and mobile networks."

AMD FS1b SoC Socket to be Branded "AM1"

Look ma, no chipset! The first wave of AMD socket FS1b motherboards, for the company's A-Series "Kabini" APUs were displayed at the 2014 International CES, where they pulled good-eyed visitors that spotted motherboards that have CPU sockets but lack any form of core logic. That's because "Kabini" completely integrates the chipset. It turns out that AMD has decided to brand the socket - so far referred to as FS1b - as socket AM1. The socket is in no way compatible (even pin-compatible, or similarly sized) as AM2, AM3, and AM3+, on which AMD's processors have been sold for the bulk of the last 8-odd years.

With the chipset completely integrated into the APU silicon, the socket is left with pins for the memory, PCI-Express, display, SATA, power, and other legacy I/O interfaces. Among the first "Kabini" APUs that AMD plans to launch are the quad-core A4-5350, with 1.60 GHz clock speed, 2 MB of cache, and 25W TDP; the A4-3850, with slightly lower 1.30 GHz clocks; and E1-2650, with its dual-core 1.45 GHz CPU, 1 MB cache, and 15W TDP.

Source: VR-Zone

AMD 2014 Mobile APUs to Deliver Leaps in Performance and Battery Life

AMD, building on its leadership in graphics and gaming, announced its 2014 mobile Accelerated Processing Unit (APU) product roadmap at the APU13 Developer Conference today. Raising the performance bar across fanless tablets, 2-in-1s and ultrathin notebooks, the APUs codenamed "Mullins" and "Beema" are projected to deliver more than 2x the performance-per-watt of the previous generation.

The latest AMD APUs also support Microsoft InstantGo for faster wake times and to ensure data such as email actively refresh in standby. Both new processor families are also the first to integrate an AMD-developed platform security processor based on the ARM Cortex-A5 featuring ARM TrustZone technology for enhanced data security. The new low-power APUs join the previously disclosed high-performance notebook APU, codenamed "Kaveri," in AMD's 2014 mobile lineup.
Image courtesy of Computerbase.de

Intel Delays 14 nm "Broadwell" Chips to Q1-2014

Intel delayed its Core "Broadwell" SoCs for desktops and notebooks to the first quarter of 2014, owing to production delays facing the 14 nanometer silicon fabrication node that the chips are based on. These issues, according to Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, could limit the company's ability to ship enough quantities of functioning chips, and so the company is ironing out its fab problems first. The delay, however, shouldn't have a cascading effect on "Skylake," the successor to "Broadwell," which is based on the same fab process. Skylake's position on the long-term company roadmaps is unaffected. "Broadwell" is a particularly important micro-architecture for Intel, which is struggling to get itself on to mainstream "post-PC" devices such as tablets.
Source: CNET, Image Credit: Anandtech

Intel Delivers Intelligence from Device to Cloud to Drive Internet of Things

Intel Corporation today announced plans to accelerate the development and deployment of the Internet of Things (IoT) by enabling intelligent devices, end-to-end analytics and connecting legacy devices to the cloud to drive business transformation.

In support of this effort, the company unveiled several products including the Intel Atom processor E3800 product family (formerly codenamed "Bay Trail-I"), a new family of Intel-based intelligent gateway solutions featuring integrated software from McAfee and Wind River, and new features for the Intel Quark SoC X1000.

Intel Launches the 'Bay Trail' Low-Power SoCs

Intel Corporation today launched its latest family of low-power systems-on-a-chip (SoC), codenamed "Bay Trail," that will fuel a wave of highly powerful and energy efficient tablets, 2 in 1s and other mobile devices to market for consumers and business users in the fourth quarter of this year from leading OEMs including AAVA, Acer, ASUS, Dell, Lenovo and Toshiba.

The "Bay Trail" family of processors is based on Intel's low-power, high-performance microarchitecture "Silvermont," announced in May 2013. The Intel Atom Z3000 Processor Series ("Bay Trail-T") is the company's first mobile multi-core SoC and its most powerful offering to date for tablets and other sleek mobile designs. It delivers a fast and fluid experience and a powerful balance of performance, battery life, graphics and rich features.

AMD Expands Elite Mobility APU Line-Up With New Quad-Core Processor

AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced a new addition to its 2013 Elite Mobility processor family, expanding the options available for anyone seeking crystal-clear HD entertainment, power efficiency, and accelerated performance in small screen touch notebooks, tablets, and hybrids. The AMD Elite Quad-Core A4-1350 accelerated processor is the second quad-core accelerated processing pnit (APU) in this category, with an estimated average power at or below 3 watts for many common use cases. The new APU is expected to begin shipping to customers in October, 2013. Other AMD Elite Mobility APUs are available in systems today, including the HP Pavilion11 TouchSmart and the Acer Aspire V5.

"Following the tremendous reception from customers to the launch of our 2013 Elite Mobility APUs, we are excited to strengthen our portfolio with the addition of the A4-1350," said Bernd Lienhard, corporate vice president, AMD Client Business Unit. "With quad-core performance, AMD Radeon HD graphics and long battery life, the A4-1350 is an ideal solution for new form factors like hybrid and convertible PCs."

New Intel CEO Outlines Product Plans, Future of Computing Vision at IDF 2013

From data centers to ultra-mobile devices such as tablets, phones and wearables, computing segments are undergoing exciting and even game-changing transitions, said new Intel CEO Brian Krzanich during today's opening session of the Intel Developer Forum. Krzanich laid out Intel's vision and described how Intel is addressing each dynamic market segment - such as accelerating Intel's progress in ultra-mobile devices - with new products over the next year and beyond, including a new, lower-power product family.

Krzanich said Intel plans to leave no segment untapped. "Innovation and industry transformation are happening more rapidly than ever before, which play to Intel's strengths. We have the manufacturing technology leadership and architectural tools in place to push further into lower power regimes. We plan to shape and lead in all areas of computing."
Image courtesy of Engadget

Intel Unveils New Technologies for Efficient Cloud Datacenters

Intel Corporation today introduced a portfolio of datacenter products and technologies for cloud service providers looking to drive greater efficiency and flexibility into their infrastructure to support a growing demand for new services and future innovation.

Server, network and storage infrastructure is evolving to better suit an increasingly diverse set of lightweight workloads, creating the emergence of microserver, cold storage and entry networking segments. By optimizing technologies for specific workloads, Intel will help cloud providers significantly increase utilization, drive down costs and provide compelling and consistent experiences to consumers and businesses.

Altera and Micron Lead Industry with FPGA & Hybrid Memory Cube Interoperability

Altera Corporation and Micron Technology, Inc. today announced they have jointly demonstrated successful interoperability between Altera Stratix V FPGAs and Micron's Hybrid Memory Cube (HMC). This technology achievement enables system designers to evaluate today the benefits of HMC with FPGAs and SoCs for next-generation communications and high-performance computing designs. The demonstration provides an early proof point that production support of HMC will be delivered with Altera's Generation 10 portfolio, in alignment with market timing, and includes both Stratix 10 and Arria 10 FPGAs and SoCs.

HMC has been recognized by industry leaders and influencers as the long-awaited answer to address the limitations imposed by conventional memory technology, and provides ultra-high system performance with significantly lower power-per-bit. HMC delivers up to 15 times the bandwidth of a DDR3 module and uses 70 percent less energy and 90 percent less space than existing technologies. HMC's abstracted memory allows designers to devote more time leveraging HMC's revolutionary features and performance and less time navigating the multitude of memory parameters required to implement basic functions. It also manages error correction, resiliency, refresh, and other parameters exacerbated by memory process variation. Micron expects to begin sampling HMC later this year with volume production ramping in 2014.

Samsung Introduces 21.5-inch Zero Client Cloud Display

Samsung Electronics America, Inc. is exhibiting its latest virtualization products and solutions at VMworld 2013, an annual conference for IT professionals focusing on virtualization and cloud computing. Samsung will be showcasing a number of virtualization products for the first time in the U.S. at VMworld, booth #1729, from August 25-29. These include the new NB-NH Cloud Stand, the all-new 21.5" NC221 and the rest of Samsung's 2013 NC Series zero client lineup of cloud displays, equipped with the new 2nd generation Teradici chipset (Tera2) processor for lower energy costs and greater power efficiency.

"Samsung is dedicated to supporting enterprise customers with products that offer businesses across vertical markets such as education, federal government, corporate, banking/financial and healthcare with secure and efficient ways to embrace cloud computing," said Tod Pike, senior vice president at Samsung's Enterprise Business Division. "Samsung continues to drive technology leadership in virtualization and cloud display by providing solutions like the NB-NH Cloud Stand that enable businesses to more easily deploy, maintain and manage user environments that are less vulnerable to security risks, while also freeing up valuable desktop real estate."

AMD Extends Embedded SoC Leadership by Lowering G-Series Energy Consumption

AMD today announced a new low-power Accelerated Processing Unit (APU) in the award-winning AMD G-Series SOC family with the GX-210JA, further reducing x86 power requirements for embedded designs. The new GX-210JA APU, a full System-on-Chip (SoC) design, uses one third less energy than the previous low-power Embedded G-Series SOC product while providing industry-leading graphics capabilities.

At only 6 watts maximum thermal design power (TDP), and approximately 3 watts expected average power, this new member of the G-Series SOC family will enable additional fanless designs for a variety of applications ranging from industrial controls and automation, digital gaming, communications infrastructure and visual embedded products including thin client, digital signage and medical imaging.

Intel Aims to "Re-Architect" Datacenters to Meet Demand for New Services

As the massive growth of information technology services places increasing demand on the datacenter, Intel Corporation today outlined its strategy to re-architect the underlying infrastructure, allowing companies and end-users to benefit from an increasingly services-oriented, mobile world. The company also announced additional details about its next-generation Intel Atom processor C2000 product family (codenamed "Avoton" and "Rangeley"), as well as outlined its roadmap of next-generation 14nm products for 2014 and beyond. This robust pipeline of current and future products and technologies will allow Intel to expand into new segments of the datacenter that look to transition from proprietary designs to more open, standards-based compute models.

"Datacenters are entering a new era of rapid service delivery," said Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of the Datacenter and Connected Systems Group at Intel. "Across network, storage and servers we continue to see significant opportunities for growth. In many cases, it requires a new approach to deliver the scale and efficiency required, and today we are unveiling the near and long-term actions to enable this transformation."

Kingston Technology Ships Memory Solutions for Growing Microserver Market

Kingston Technology Company, Inc., the independent world leader in memory products, today announced it is shipping server memory solutions for microservers, a new and growing segment of the server market. Kingston has both 1.35v low-voltage ECC SO-DIMMs and unregistered DIMMs in 1600MHz and 1333MHz frequencies to support both x86 or ARM-based processors and system-on -chip (SoC) designs.

Microservers are quickly gaining in popularity as companies seek powerful, yet more energy- and physical-space efficient solutions that serve specific data center needs or cloud applications. Examples include web and cloud hosting, and big data where terabytes or petabytes of information sets are analyzed per second. Kingston's low-voltage, high-performing microserver memory modules are the perfect match to help accomplish these tasks.

Intel Roadmap Outlines LGA to BGA Transition

Intel's first processors in the BGA (ball-grid array) package, arrive by the end of 2013, according to a leaked roadmap slide. Some of the first of these processors will span across entry-level market segments, covering the Celeron and Pentium brands. The term system-on-chip (SoC) better defines these chips than processors, as they completely integrate the processor as we know it, with the motherboard chipset. Motherboards with BGA processors come with the processors non-replaceable, and hard-wired to the board, with a stock fan-heatsink.

Intel's first SoCs for the desktop are based on the "BayTrail-D" silicon. These include the Celeron J1750, Celeron J1850, and Pentium J2850. Celeron J1750 is a dual-core part, with the CPU cores clocked at 2.41 GHz, GPU at 792 MHz, and a TDP rated at just 10W. Celeron J1850, on the other hand, is a quad-core part, with its CPU cores clocked at 2.00 GHz, and the same 792 MHz GPU. Pentium J2850 tops the series, being a quad-core part with CPU cores running at 2.41 GHz, and GPU at 792 MHz. Both these quad-core parts stick to 10W TDP. Being SoCs, these chips integrate connectivity otherwise handled by a PCH, into the processor package. According to an Intel roadmap slide, the three parts will spearhead Intel's BGA CPU lineup deep into 2014, at least as far as late-June.

RockChip Builds SoCs on GlobalFoundries' 28 nm HKMG Process

GLOBALFOUNDRIES and Fuzhou Rockchip Electronics Co., Ltd. today announced that Rockchip's next-generation mobile processors are ramping to production on GLOBALFOUNDRIES' 28 nm High-K Metal Gate (HKMG) process technology. Based on a multi-core ARM Cortex-A9 design, the RK3188 and RK3168 chips are optimized for tomorrow's high-performance, low-cost tablets that require long-lasting battery life (see product specifications in annex).

The combination of Rockchip's design and GLOBALFOUNDRIES' 28 nm HKMG process technology resulted in a mainstream tablet System-on-Chip (SoC) capable of operating at up to 1.8 GHz performance, while still maintaining the power efficiency expected by mobile device users. The chips began sampling to OEMs in early 2013 and are now ramping to support a wide range of manufacturers.

ECS KBN-I AMD "Kabini" SoC Motherboard Smiles for the Camera

ECS unveiled one of the very few mini-ITX motherboards to ship with an AMD "Kabini" A6-5200. The chip integrates both the APU and FCH, making it a true system-on-chip (SoC). It packs four x86-64 "Jaguar" CPU cores, a Radeon HD 8400 series GPU with 128 stream processors, a dual-channel DDR3 memory controller, and a modern FCH chipset. On the KBN-I, the 28 nm chip is cooled by a small fan-heatsink. The PCB area gained by the single-chip solution is used to create two mPCIe expansion slots, in addition to the PCI-Express 2.0 x16. The board draws power from just a 24-pin ATX connector. Connectivity include two SATA 6 Gb/s ports, 6-channel HD audio, D-Sub and HDMI display outputs, four USB 3.0 ports, and a gigabit Ethernet connection.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Accelerates Adoption of 20nm-LPM and 14nm-XM FinFET Processes

At next week's 50th Design Automation Conference (DAC) in Austin, Texas, GLOBALFOUNDRIES will unveil a comprehensive set of certified design flows to support its most advanced manufacturing processes. The flows, jointly developed with the leading EDA providers, offer robust support for implementing designs in the company's 20nm low power process and its leading-edge 14nm-XM FinFET process. Working closely with Cadence Design Systems, Mentor Graphics and Synopsys, GLOBALFOUNDRIES has developed the flows to address the most pressing design challenges, including support for analog/mixed signal (AMS) design, and advanced digital designs, both with demonstration of the impact of double patterning on the flow.

The GLOBALFOUNDRIES design flows work with its process design kits (PDKs) to provide real examples that demonstrate the entire flow. The user can download the design database, the PDK, detailed documentation and multi-vendor scripts to learn how to set up and use the GLOBALFOUNDRIES design flow. The flows use open source examples and provide the customer with working, executable and customizable flows.

HSA Foundation Announces First Specification

The HSA Foundation has released Version 0.95 of its Programmer's Reference Manual. The HSA (Heterogeneous System Architecture) Foundation is a not-for-profit consortium dedicated to developing architecture specifications that unlock the performance and power efficiency of the parallel computing engines found in most modern devices. This is the first output from the HSA Foundation, who have been collaborating on this project since its founding in June 2012. It represents an important step in the development of the HSA Foundation's ecosystem because it enables software partners to develop libraries, tools and middleware and to code high performance kernels.

The Programmer's Reference Manual provides a standardized method of accessing all available computing resources in HSA-compliant systems. This enables a wide range of system resources to cooperate on parallelizable tasks. It has been specifically designed to perform in the most energy efficient way without compromising on performance. The goal is to enable a heterogeneous architecture that is easy to program, opens up new and rich user experiences and improves performance and quality of service, whilst reducing energy consumption.

AMD Amplifies the Mobile Experience

AMD today launched three new additions to its 2013 A-Series and E-Series Mobile Accelerated Processing Unit (APU) lineup -- delivering solutions ideally positioned to address today's evolving PC market with dramatically increased performance and power efficiency, as well as a portfolio of unique user experiences, and superior gaming and graphics:
  • The 2013 AMD Elite Mobility APU (formerly codenamed "Temash") -- the world's first 28nm, quad-core x86 system-on-a-chip (SoC) APU designed for touch small form-factor notebooks, tablets, and hybrids 13-inches and below;
  • The 2013 AMD Mainstream APU (formerly codenamed "Kabini") -- the first and only quad-core x86 SoC solution for entry-level and small-form factor touch notebooks;
  • New, low power versions of the 2013 AMD Elite Performance APU (formerly codenamed "Richland") -- offer the best graphics and compute in a performance APU for premium ultrathin notebooks.

Intel Launches Low-Power, High-Performance Silvermont Microarchitecture

Intel Corporation today took the wraps off its brand new, low-power, high-performance microarchitecture named Silvermont. The technology is aimed squarely at low-power requirements in market segments from smartphones to the data center. Silvermont will be the foundation for a range of innovative products beginning to come to market later this year, and will also be manufactured using the company's leading-edge, 22nm Tri-Gate SoC manufacturing process, which brings significant performance increases and improved energy efficiency.

"Silvermont is a leap forward and an entirely new technology foundation for the future that will address a broad range of products and market segments," said Dadi Perlmutter, Intel executive vice president and chief product officer. "Early sampling of our 22nm SoCs, including "Bay Trail" and "Avoton" is already garnering positive feedback from our customers. Going forward, we will accelerate future generations of this low-power microarchitecture on a yearly cadence."

AMD to Create Tailored Products Integrating Customer-Specific IP

AMD announced today a strategic focus on developing one-of-a-kind solutions through its Semi-Custom Business Unit based on the extensive set of intellectual property (IP) amassed across AMD processors, graphics and multimedia. Providing to customers a level of flexibility and differentiation that goes beyond standard AMD products, the business unit takes AMD to a new level of customer-centric design by integrating these building blocks with customer-specific IP to create tailor-made solutions using a flexible System-on-a-Chip (SoC) design methodology.

AMD's high-performance SoC processor design methodology provides a modular approach, leveraging best practices to readily re-use silicon IP and design building blocks. With the Semi-Custom Business Unit, AMD collaborates with customers to create customized chip solutions that help enable customers to push the boundaries in product development. The business unit features a strong team of engineers who are well-versed in graphics and compute processing, and is led by Corporate Vice President and General Manager Saeid Moshkelani. Moshkelani joined AMD last year from Trident Microsystems and reports to AMD Senior Vice President and General Manager of Global Business Units Lisa Su.

AMD Welcomes Raja Koduri as Corporate Vice President, Visual Computing

AMD today announced that Raja Koduri, 44, has rejoined the company as corporate vice president, Visual Computing, reporting to Mark Papermaster, senior vice president and chief technology officer. In his new role, Koduri will have overall responsibility for driving AMD's innovation in visual and accelerated computing.

"Maintaining AMD's position as a leader in visual computing is the key to our long-term success. As one of the industry's foremost experts in developing leading-edge visual computing solutions, Raja brings exceptional vision and strength to AMD's world-class engineering leadership team," said Papermaster. "Given his past record of success, Raja will help AMD lead the way in visual and accelerated computing and ensure we continue developing the industry-leading graphics IP that forms the foundation for our future growth."

IDF 2013 Transforming Computing Experiences from the Device to the Cloud

During her keynote at the Intel Developer Forum today in Beijing, Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's Datacenter and Connected Systems Group, discussed how her company is helping users harness powerful new capabilities that will improve the lives of people by building smarter cities, healthier communities and thriving businesses.

Bryant unveiled details of upcoming technologies and products that show how Intel aims to transform the server, networking and storage capabilities of the datacenter. By addressing the full spectrum of workload demands and providing new levels of application optimized solutions for enterprise IT, technical computing and cloud service providers, unprecedented experiences can be delivered.

TSMC and Cadence Strengthen Collaboration on 16 nm FinFET Process Development

Cadence Design Systems, Inc., today announced an ongoing multi-year agreement with TSMC to develop the design infrastructure for 16-nanometer FinFET technology, targeting advanced node designs for mobile, networking, servers and FPGA applications. The deep collaboration, beginning earlier in the design process than usual, will effectively address the design challenges specific to FinFETs -- from design analysis through signoff -- and will deliver the infrastructure necessary to enable ultra low-power, high-performance chips.

FinFETs help deliver the power, performance, and area (PPA) advantages that are needed to develop highly differentiated SoC designs at 16 nanometers and smaller process technologies. Unlike a planar FET, the FinFET employs a vertical fin-like structure protruding from the substrate with the gate wrapping around the sides and top of the fin, thereby producing transistors with low leakage currents and fast switching performance. This extended Cadence-TSMC collaboration will produce the design infrastructure that chip designers need for accurate electrical characteristics and parasitic models required for advanced FinFET designs for mobile and enterprise applications.
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