MediaQ currently makes chips that enhance the graphics performance on both Palm OS and Pocket PC handhelds. Apparently not content with its products being in a supporting role, MediaQ has licenced the ARM922T embedded processor core. It intends to use it in an application processor for multimedia-centric portable devices.
“MediaQ has selected the ARM922T core as the foundation for its new generation of energy-efficient applications processors that will bring high-end multimedia capabilities to attractively priced handhelds,” said Elie Antoun, president and CEO, MediaQ. “The popular ARM9 family CPU core will be complimented by our hardware acceleration technologies that will create a uniquely crafted SoC [System-on-a-Chip] for the mobile market space.”
ARM-based chips are at the heart of most handhelds being produced today. Both Intel’s XScale line and Texas Instruments OMAP line have ARM cores.
The ARM922T core is suitable for a wide range of OSs such as Palm OS, Symbian OS, Linux, and Windows CE. Built around the ARM9TDMI 32-bit RISC CPU, the ARM922T core features 8k instruction and data caches, memory management unit (MMU), AMBA methodology-compliant interfaces, and support for the ARM real-time trace technology.
It is a bit early to say what companies might base handhelds on MediaQ’s new processor. MediaQ is a member of the Palm OS Ready program so potentially this new processor could appear in future Palm OS products.
MediaQ’s graphic controller chips are widely used in handhelds now. For example, some members of Sony’s Clie line have them, as well as the HP iPAQ h5400 Series, and several Toshiba models use them.