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VIA Chooses Tensilica for Solid State Drive (SSD) Chip Design

Tensilica, Inc. today announced that VIA has selected Tensilica's Xtensa dataplane processors (DPUs) for a system-on-chip (SOC) design for solid state drives (SSDs). After conducting a technical evaluation, VIA determined that Tensilica's DPUs provide over four times the performance of competing processors on key algorithms used to benchmark competitive alternatives.

SSDs require faster and more efficient data management and manipulation to increase their throughput (measured in Input/Output Operations per Second, or IOPS). With conventional processors, increasing the clock speed is the common way to increase performance. However, this increases energy consumption and die size, especially as speeds increase so much that designers are forced to move to more complex multi-core solutions.

HP Introduces New, AMD and VIA-Powered Thin Clients

HP today announced the powerful new HP t610 Flexible Series Thin Client and HP t510 Thin Client with industry-leading performance and security, enabling businesses to protect their data more effectively while improving employees' user experience.

The HP t510 and HP t610 come standard with dual-core CPUs and offer graphics cores that offload computing from the server to the chipset, enabling users to easily stream multimedia and work with high-definition (HD) graphics. The HP t510 and HP t610 also enable the use of multiple monitors and remote connections.

VIA Announces Highest Performance Dual Core VIA EPIA-M910 Mini-ITX Board

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the VIA EPIA-M910 Mini-ITX board, the latest dual core Mini-ITX board featuring one of the richest I/O sets available for a wide range of embedded applications including ATM, kiosks, POS, digital signage, healthcare and digital media applications.

The VIA EPIA-M910 is available in both active and passive cooling configurations with the choice of either a performance oriented 1.6 GHz VIA Nano X2 dual core processor or a fanless 1.0 GHz VIA Eden X2 dual core processor and is paired with the VIA VX900 media system processor, which provides the ideal platform for today's HD-intensive applications.

Enermax Unveils DreamBass AP001 USB Audio Device

With the ever-shrinking laptops of today, space constrains mean that each component on the logic board has lesser board space, as is the case with audio. The cylindrical capacitors and FETs on PC motherboards are reduced to weaker surface-mount ones to conserve board space, on laptop logic boards. Audio quality takes a beating. Hence there's a sizable market for USB audio devices that provide better audio for laptops. Enermax' entry into it is the DreamBass AP001, a 2-channel USB audio device. It is designed to look like a vacuum tube that gives it a classy analog amp look.

In reality, it is completely digital. At the heart of it is a VIA VT1620A USB 2.0 2-channel HD audio CODEC, which provides stereo output with 24-bit resolution and 96 kHz sample-rate. It has a signal-noise ratio of 80~90 dBA, which is not much of a departure from most laptops' HDA CODECs, if it isn't for the MOSFET-based amplifier circuit packed into the DreamBass AP001, that's capable of 80Hz/+6dB Bass. The device features a 3.5 mm stereo jack and mic input. Enermax also has a variant called the AP001E, which includes earphones that have 10 mm drivers, 95 dBA SNR, and 32 ohm impedance. The DreamBass AP001 is priced at 3,280 JPY (US $43); the AP001E goes for 3,980 ($52.2). It could be a good investment if you think your laptop's audio sounds like a greeting card.

Gigabyte Also Makes a VIA Nano-powered Mini-ITX motherboard

Besides the MSH61DK mentioned earlier today, Gigabyte Technology has recently unveiled another Mini-ITX motherboard, one M7V90PI which is based around VIA's VX900 chipset and is equipped with one Nano U3300 (1.2 GHz) single-core processor.

Aimed for the embedded market, the M7V90PI also packs (just) one DDR3 SO-DIMM slot, Chrome9 HD (DirectX 9) integrated graphics, a VIA Vinyl VT1708S audio codec, two SATA 3.0 Gbps ports, one PCIe x1 slot, Gigabit Ethernet, six USB 2.0 connectors, and D-Sub, plus DVI outputs.

VIA Labs USB 3.0 Active Optical Cable Solution Demonstrated at CES 2012

VIA Labs, Inc., a leading supplier of USB 3.0 integrated chip controllers, announced the VIA Labs VO510 5-Gigabit Optical Transceiver which was showcased at CES 2012. The VIA Labs V0510 Optical Transceiver is used in USB 3.0 Active Optical Cables (AOC) which enables rapid data transfers and high-definition multimedia across distances of over 100 meters. Developed in collaboration with FOCI, PCL, OpTarget and UMEC, USB 3.0 AOC solutions offer exciting new possibilities in the use of USB 3.0 technology.

"This USB 3.0 AOC was designed to be fully compliant with SuperSpeed USB electrical specifications," said Dr. Janpu Hou, Vice President of FOCI. "We are very pleased to be a partner on this collaboration team. This partnership will accelerate the deployment of breakthrough USB 3.0 technologies and enable new applications for all USB 3.0 developers." As a partner of FOCI, Dr. Thomas Liu, President of PCL said "As the world leading optical transceiver ODM/CM company, PCL Technologies is excited to build and demonstrate the optical USB 3.0 cable in collaboration with VIA Labs and Foci. With the USB 3.0 AOCs providing higher data rates across much longer distances, we will enable usage scenarios in Digital Signage, Surveillance, and Zero Client applications."

VIA Labs Unveils USB2Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology

VIA Labs, Inc., a leading supplier of USB 3.0 integrated chip controllers, today announced its proprietary USB2Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology for USB 3.0 Hubs which dramatically improves USB 2.0 performance when multiple devices are utilized. USB 3.0 Hubs featuring the technology eliminate USB 2.0 bandwidth limitations by providing full, dedicated bandwidth per port, allowing multiple USB 2.0 devices to be connected and operated at their maximum capabilities.

USB 2.0 provides 30-40MB/s of actual throughput, and this is shared across all connected devices. When multiple devices such as external hard drives, flash drives, and webcams are connected, they share available bandwidth which results in severely degraded performance. Compared to USB 2.0, USB 3.0 offers 10x more bandwidth and allows transfers as fast as 300-400MB/s. VIA Labs USB2 Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology allows USB 2.0 devices to utilize USB 3.0 bandwidth, eliminating bandwidth bottlenecks and freeing each connected device to reach its maximum performance potential.

VIA Announces Latest VB7009 Mini-ITX Embedded Board

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the VIA VB7009 embedded Mini-ITX board. Measuring only 17cm x 17cm, the VIA VB7009 Mini-ITX is an extremely flexible embedded board with top class functionality and performance for POS and kiosks.

The VIA VB7009 is a cost effective solution offering a broad range of power efficient VIA CPU choices, including the dual core VIA NanoTM X2 processor, providing superior flexibility to match customers' embedded computing needs. Paired with the VIA VX900 unified all-in-one media system processor, the VIA VB7009 Mini-ITX embedded board delivers a highly optimized platform that boasts stunning HD video performance of the most demanding video formats at resolutions of up to 1080p.

VIA Announces Android Support for Embedded x86 Boards

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced Android support for VIA x86 embedded platforms, starting with support for the VIA EITX-3002 Em-ITX board. Running Android on an x86 platform offers increased flexibility, great multimedia support and cost saving advantages for embedded applications such as in-vehicle entertainment and interactive kiosks.

Key advantages for Android on x86 include leverage of Android development resources and existing apps, rich I/O flexibility, greater CPU performance as well as higher display resolutions of up to 1920 x 1080. In addition VIA has released SMART ETK, an Embedded Tool Kit which allows monitoring and control of peripheral devices through the Android OS, allowing for greater environmental control of kiosk and other installed environments.

The Teeny-Tiny DIY PC That Fits In The Palm Of Your Hand

Do you want a really small PC that fits in the palm of your hand? Well, if you do, then VIA Technology have got you covered with their new ARTiGO A1150. As you can see from the pictures, it has a high 'cuteness' factor, due to its diminutive size of just 5.7" x 3.9" x 2". For processing, it sports a 64-bit VIA 1.0 GHz dual core Eden X2 CPU and a VX900H media system processor supporting the latest HD video codecs including H.264, VC-1 and MPEG-2/4 at up to 1080p. Interfaces include HDMI and VGA ports, a Gigabit Ethernet port, five USB ports including one USB device port, three audio jacks with optional wireless IEEE 802.11 b/g/n and SD card reader modules.

Target uses include the usual home/office environments, use as a super space-saving desktop PC, a home server, media streaming and surveillance applications. Of course, the real question is what kind of performance can one expect out if it, given that it's targeted at the desktop PC market, so one hopes that it can run Windows 7 at a decent performance level. Oddly, the VIA press release doesn't say anything about the RAM, so it's not clear how much can be fitted, which type and what speed grades are supported.

VIA Releases VIA VE-900 Mini-ITX Mainboard for Digital Home Media Enthusiasts

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the VIA VE-900 Mini-ITX Mainboard, immediately available worldwide at incredibly competitive pricing. The VIA VE-900 Mini-ITX provides the ideal platform for DIY enthusiasts to custom build stylish home desktop and media center PCs.

Featuring a high-performance 1.4GHz VIA Nano X2 dual core processor and the VIA VX900 unified all-in-one media system processor, the VIA VE-900 Mini-ITX Mainboard delivers a highly optimized platform that boasts stunning HD video performance of the most demanding video formats at resolutions of up to 1080p. The VIA VE-900 Mini-ITX also supports high fidelity surround sound through the VIA VT1708S HD audio codec which delivers amazing stereo 24-bit resolution and up to 192kHz sample rates and adds HDMI support in a compact, power-efficient package.

AMD Fails to Halt S3 Graphics Patent Lawsuit Against Apple

In late September, S3 Graphics, still a subsidiary of VIA Technology and soon to be transferred to HTC, dragged Apple Inc. to court over charges of patent infringement related to graphics component IP of nearly all Apple products, including iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and iMac. Last month, AMD, now a main supplier of graphics processors for Apple's Mac products, intervened with a counter lawsuit claiming it owned the patents that S3 has asserted against Apple, and sought an immediate halt to S3's patent case against Apple.

In an October 28 filing with the ITC, S3 says that a federal judge struck down a request for an immediate halt into S3's case, but the Commission is scheduled to release its final decision on November 15. The case struck down is (rather was) Advanced Micro Devices Inc. v. S3 Graphics Co., 11cv965, U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware (Wilmington).

ZOTAC Announces ZBOX Nano VD01

ZOTAC International, a leading innovator and channel manufacturer of graphics cards, motherboards and mini-PCs, today launches the latest addition to the ZBOX nano product lineup with the new ZBOX nano VD01 series - an affordable palm-sized mini-PC powered by a VIA Nano X2 processor.

The ZOTAC ZBOX nano VD01 series combines the latest VIA Nano X2 U4025 CPU and VX900H media system processor for outstanding energy-efficiency and performance. VIA Chrome9 graphics with ChromotionHD 2.0 processing enables the ZOTAC ZBOX nano VD01 series to deliver silky-smooth playback of popular high-definition video formats, including Blu-ray, MPEG2, H.264, VC-1 and streaming Internet video.

Now, S3 Graphics Slaps Apple with Two Patent Infringement Charges

Soon to be subsidiary of HTC, currently held by VIA Technologies, S3 Graphics, fired off two more patent infringement charges against Apple Inc. Last week, VIA Technologies had sued Apple for alleged infringement of two of its CPU-related patents. These fresh charges by S3 Graphics, like those by VIA, seek sales ban on iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, as well as Mac in the United States. The complaints were filed with the US ITC (United States International Trade Commission), and a district court in Delaware.

S3 Graphics patents that the company claims Apple infringed are: #5945997 "block- and band-oriented traversal in three-dimensional triangle rendering," and #5581279 "VGA controller circuitry". If S3 Graphics pulls it off, it could inflict significant damage on Apple's sales, as the company heads towards the winter shopping season.

VIA Seeks US Ban of iPhone, iPad Over Patent Infringements

Taiwan-based low-power computing technology company VIA sought a sales ban of Apple's iPhone and iPad, for what it alleges to be patent infringements of its microprocessor intellectual property. VIA sought a jury trial along with a sales ban on Apple products containing the inventions in the U.S., according to a complaint filed yesterday in federal court in Wilmington, Delaware.

In its complaint VIA says "The products at issue generally concern microprocessors included in a variety of electronic products such as certain smartphones, tablet computers, portable media players and other computing devices." This specifically impinges upon Apple's cash-cow products, the iPhone and iPad, and it isn't coming at a good time because Apple, according to market analyst Gartner Inc., will dominate tablet sales this holiday season. The case is Via Technologies v. Apple Inc. (AAPL), U.S. District Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).

ZOTAC ZBox Mini PC to Get VIA Nano X2 Power

ZOTAC is readying a new ZBox mini-PC model that makes use of VIA Nano X2 ultra-low power x86 platform. Nano X2-powered ZBox models have been already spotted in the Japanese market. The new ZBox model will make use of Nano X2 U4025, which is a dual-core processor clocked at 1.20 GHz. While VIA is the smallest x86 processor vendor, in the ULV category, the company does tend to punch above its weight, competing with low-wattage Intel Atom processors.

The Nano X2 U4025 processor will be backed by VIA VX900H chipset, with integrated S3 Graphics. The VIA-powered ZBox will be available in two SKUs: a complete product, and a barebones package to which you have to add some of your own compatible components. Both will support up to 4 GB of DDR3 memory, a 2.5-inch SATA bay will be provided to install a hard drive or SSD. Most other features will be consistent with other ZBox models: 6-in-1 card reader, Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth 3.0, USB 3.0 connectivity, as well as HDMI and DisplayPort outputs. Originally based on the Intel Atom platform, ZOTAC's ZBox is available in AMD Fusion "Zacate" platform apart from the new VIA-powered one. The new ZBox models will be available worldwide by the end of this month.

VIA Labs Launches New Second-Generation USB 3.0 Hub Controller

VIA Labs, Inc., a leading supplier of SuperSpeed USB (USB 3.0) integrated chip controllers, today unveiled the VIA Labs VL811 4-port SuperSpeed Hub Controller. The VL811 is VIA Labs' second-generation USB 3.0 Hub product, and adds support for USB Battery Charging Spec. 1.2. Beyond transfer rates of up to 5Gbps, the VL811 features improved performance for new and existing devices with host controllers, and adds rapid-charging capabilities.

"VIA Labs VL811 builds on the success of the VL810, the world's first 4-port USB 3.0 Hub controller," said Terrance Shih, Project Manager of VIA Labs, Inc USB 3.0 Hubs. "It adds exciting new features, such as the rapid charging function and improved performance."

VIA Labs Launches VL751, the Next-Generation USB 3.0 to NAND Flash Controller

VIA Labs, Inc., a leading supplier of USB 3.0 integrated chip controllers, today announced its latest USB 3.0 device controller, the VIA Labs VL751 SuperSpeed USB to NAND flash controller. The VL751 is VIA Labs' second-generation single-chip solution for USB 3.0 flash drives, and offers enhanced performance using today's popular flash memories. The VIA Labs VL751 has been certified by the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) for SuperSpeed operation, ensuring high quality, seamless interoperability, and effortless backwards compatibility.

The VIA Labs VL751 features a four-channel NAND interface, doubling or even quadrupling maximum throughput over single or dual-channel designs. The second generation VIA Labs VL751 offers improved parallelization and higher efficiency through integrated pre-read and pre-write buffers, better support for popular flash memories, and a pipelined ECC engine. Cumulatively, these enhancements translate into a nearly 100% performance boost over the VIA Labs VL750 with no increase in power consumption.

VIA Technologies Announces Sale of Stake in S3 Graphics

VIA Technologies, Inc. ("VIA") today announced the signing of definitive agreement to sell all of its shareholding in S3 Graphics Co., Ltd. ("S3 Graphics") to HTC Corporation ("HTC"). S3 Graphics is a leading provider of innovative graphics visualization technologies used in PCs, game consoles and, more recently, mobile devices.

VIA acquired S3 Graphics in 2001 with the intention to accelerate integration of graphics capabilities with its processor and chipset products. S3 Graphics became undercapitalized in 2005, and VIA introduced WTI Investment International, Ltd. ("WTI") as a new investor to help fund the operations and R&D initiatives. WTI is a private investment company, in which Cher Wang, Chairman of VIA, is a significant shareholder.

VIA QuadCore Processor Revealed

VIA Technologies revealed its upcoming 4-core processor, simply called "QuadCore". The chip comes in BGA packages, and is simply a multi-chip module (MCM) of two Nano X2 dies built on the 40 nm process. One of the first models is the QuadCore L4700, which is clocked at 1.20 GHz with a BClk of 266 MHz. Using the Adaptive Overclocking feature, the processor can bump clock speeds up to 1.46 GHz provided the thermal solution by the manufacturer can keep up, while keeping the chip within its thermal constraint of 27.5W TDP. Each of the two dies can independently up speeds based on their individual loads and temperatures.

The VIA QuadCore L4700 features four x86-64 cores split between two dual-core dies that share a V4 front-side bus clocked at 1333 MHz. The processor has a total L2 cache of 4 MB, also split between the two dies. On the feature-set front, SIMD extensions up to SSE3 are available, so is VIA Virtualization Technology, and Padlock Security Engine, which is a fast hardware random number generator that speeds up AES encryption. The processor itself doesn't feature on-die memory controller or integrated graphics, and continues to rely on the chipset for memory and graphics. VIA's QuadCore L4700 is expected to be released in Q3, 2011, at least one can expect VIA-made demo platforms to be shown at Computex.

VIA Launches VIA ART-5450 for In-Vehicle and Fleet Management Applications

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the launch of its VIA ART-5450 embedded box PC system, designed to offer embedded developers the ideal system platform for today's sophisticated logistics and fleet management applications.

Based on a uniquely compact, fanless and rugged design, the VIA ART-5450 offers a full feature set that includes a range of wireless 3G communications, dual display and advanced power management support, creating a flexible and stable platform for in-vehicle systems that control, monitor and manage commercial vehicles.

VIA Eden X2 Unveiled at Embedded World 2011

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the new VIA Eden X2 processor, the industry's lowest power dual-core processor, optimized for fanless implementation in a broad range of industrial and commercial embedded systems. VIA Eden X2 will debut at Embedded World 2011, Nuremberg, Hall 12, Booth No. 574

VIA Eden X2 processors combine VIA's signature 'Eden' fanless design principles, in a highly optimized, power-efficient dual-core architecture. This guarantees rock-solid stability for mission critical embedded systems without compromising on performance or features. With a component longevity guarantee of 7 years, VIA Eden X2 processors are guaranteed to extend the reach of fanless system design for years to come.

Q4 PC Graphics Shipments in a Slump, Competitors Eat into Intel's Lead

Market research firm Jon Peddie Research gave out PC graphics shipments figures for Q4 2010. PC and related products sales overall were lower than usual in 2010 as the industry saw propagation of ULPCs, netbooks, and tablets propagate, hence PC graphics sales, too, were lower by as much as 7.8% down compared to the same period in 2009. Sales of GPUs and processor-embedded GPUs in Q4 stood at 113 million units, 432.2 million in all of 2010. Intel continues to be the dominant player, though its market share was lowered by competitors AMD and NVIDIA. Intel's market share was lowered in 2010, to 52.5%, from 55.2% in Q3 2010. AMD/ATI is at the second spot with a market share of 24.2% (up, from 23% in Q3); and NVIDIA at the third spot at 22.5% (21% in Q3). Other smaller GPU vendors, VIA and Matrox, stood at 0.8%, and 0.1%, respectively.

VIA Announces VIA Nano X2 Dual-Core Processor

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced its latest VIA Nano X2 processor for mainstream PC markets. Based on a 40 nanometer fabrication process, the VIA Nano X2 delivers better computational performance and improved multi-tasking ability without consuming more power.

"The VIA Nano X2 processor arrives at a time when software architectures are now optimized to for multi-thread computing," commented Richard Brown, VP International Marketing, VIA Technologies, Inc. "Improvements in semi-conductor fabrication means we can now double the number of processor cores while maintaining the same low energy consumption levels that our customers are used to."

VIA Launches VIA eH1, Embedded Industry's First Dedicated Graphics Card

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the world's first graphics card designed specifically for the embedded market with the VIA eH1, a DX10.1 compliant, multi-display card that thrusts any system with a PCI Express slot into a new realm of graphics and video capability.

The VIA eH1 comes with a three year product longevity guarantee and is the most power-efficient discrete graphics and video solution on the market today. The VIA eH1 AIB features an advanced DirectX 10.1, OpenGL 3.1, OpenGL ES 2.0 compatible 64-bit architecture and offers multi-stream 1080p HD video decoding and Stereoscopic 3D rendering capability. This makes it the ideal solution for a range of embedded applications that require advanced graphics and video on multiple displays.
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