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11 July 2020

Intel’s Atom moving into new embedded markets, supported by Microsoft Auto 4.0 infotainment system

Intel has joined Advanced Micro Devices in spinning off some manufacturing capacity.  In Intel’s case, the chip maker has partnered with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC).  According to an Intel press release, the two companies have signed a Memorandum Of Understanding saying “Intel would port its Atom processor CPU cores to the TSMC technology platform including processes, IP, libraries, and design flows.”

TSMC has been in business since 1987 and has compiled a large portfolio of intellectual property.  With the partnership, Intel will be able to distribute Intel Atom SoC’s (system-on-chip) capable of powering a greater range of consumer products.

intel infotainment Intels Atom moving into new embedded markets, supported by Microsoft Auto 4.0 infotainment system

In fact, Intel has also said a number of Atom-based product enhancements are on the way to power in-vehicle infotainment devices, media phones, eco-technologies and other industrial applications.  The four segments will all have a unique Atom processor within the Atom 5xx series and will have an additional pair of system controller hubs.  To speed up its embedded options, Intel will also release a media phone reference design including schematics when the new products are released in the second quarter.

I found it funny to hear that Microsoft will be one of the first companies to take advantage of the new Atom 5xx series with its new Auto 4.0 vehicle infotainment system.  Designed to afford developers low-cost, quick-to-market head units, Auto 4.0 will also support ARM and SH-based processors.  Maybe Microsoft’s new foray into the automotive market explains the recent TomTom patent suit.

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