Now Android on Next-Generation Multicore Mobile Platforms From ST-Ericsson and ARM

ST-Ericsson and ARM announced today at Mobile World Congress, Barcelona, their ongoing
joint development to optimize Android to take advantage of
Symmetric Multi Processing when executing on the
high-performance and power-efficient ST-Ericsson U8500 platform,
which uses a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore processor. This
next-generation platform improves the multitasking capability and peak
performance of Android handsets, while maintaining the lowest power
consumption profile. Support for SMP within Android will enable
the next level of performance and capabilities for Android
handsets. This includes combining access to rich web content and
multimedia, the latest location-based services and social
networking, and a compelling user interface.

Consumer demand for advanced multimedia
applications and an always-on, full web experience on their
handsets is putting unprecedented pressure on the battery life of
devices. ARM MPCore technology provides improvements over the
multicore architectures which are now widely used in personal
computers and servers to maximize the performance and
power-efficiency of a device by enabling power management techniques
that significantly reduce dynamic and static power consumption. This
joint optimization from the ST-Ericsson and ARM effort will be fed
back into the Android Open Source community for all to use.

“Using mobile
phones solely to make phone calls and send short messages is
becoming a thing of the past,” said Ronan de Renesse, senior analyst,
head of Mobile Media, Screen Digest. “Revenues from mobile data
services and applications are set to double in the next four years
to reach Euro 100bn. For the market to reach its full potential,
new mobile devices must become more versatile. With Web browsing
being the most popular application on smartphones, it is also
therefore critical for manufacturers to offer the best browsing

By optimizing Android for SMP on the Cortex-A9
MPCore processor, ST-Ericsson and ARM will help device
manufacturers meet the growing demand for advanced smartphones
with the cost and power consumption characteristics of a
traditional feature phone.

Among the very first chipsets to integrate the
ARM multicore Cortex-A9 MPCore application processor and the
Mali-400™ graphic processor, ST-Ericsson’s U8500 platform can
provide peak application performance while also being able to
support 120 hours of audio playback or 12 hours of full HD video
playback on one battery charge.

“Being strong supporters of Open Source, we have
already started to contribute optimizations for ARM multicore
technology to Android and look forward to bringing more to the
Open Source community, enabling consumers innovative user
experiences,” said Teppo Hemia, vice president, 3G Multimedia
Platforms Business Unit of ST-Ericsson. “Our work with ARM will
accelerate the shift of Android and the mobile industry to
advanced multicore processors, significantly improving performance
scalability while maintaining low levels of power consumption.”

“Our partnership with ST-Ericsson will bring about a step change in
the performance and capabilities of Android handsets enabling a
richer and more sophisticated mobile web experience,” said Ian
Drew, executive vice president, Marketing, ARM. “By providing an
on-demand use of device resources, the ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore
multicore processor is quickly becoming the defacto technology in
the handset market, where low power consumption with on-demand
performance is critical.”


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