HP gets a hand from Texas Instruments

@ 2013/03/06
Texas Instruments appears to have won the contract to provide the low powered chips for HP's new server range.

The maker of printer ink wanted to come up with a range of low-power ARM based servers as part of something dubbed Project Moonshot. That involves using Intel or ARM processors.

According to PC World, TI came to the party with an SOC which includes ARM's quad-core Cortex-A15 processor.

The Cortex-A15 processor design is ARM's latest and brightest and had not really been seen until it was shown in a prototype tablet and smartphone at last week's Mobile World Congress show in Barcelona.

TI's Keystone II chip package includes cores for network processing and I/O, much like a unified server chip package offered by Calxeda, which uses an ARM processor. HP is also offering the Calxeda chip called EnergyCore in its Moonshot plans.

Writing on the company's blog, Tim Wesselman, senior director of ecosystem strategy at HP's HyperScale Business Unit, said that by coupling TI's new KeyStone II architecture with HP Moonshot enables large-scale, concurrent real-time processing of cloud and traditional telecommunications workloads all under one bonnet.

The integrated system optimised for high performance, power-efficient processing, he wrote.

Google, Facebook and Amazon are buying all the low powered servers they can find at the moment and there is a growing interest in low-power ARM processor server gear.

As an alternative to Xeon, HP is also working with Intel's low-power Atom chip code-named Centerton as part of Project Moonshot.

Observers were a little surprised to see that TI was involved with HP after it appeared to have lost out to rivals like Qualcomm and Nvidia. In fact TI said last year it could not be bothered with developing low-power chips for smartphones and tablets, and would concentrate on the embedded and microcontroller markets.

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