Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Intel's New Embedded Strategy

In 2006 Intel sold the mobile XScale processor business to Marvell "to focus its investments on its core businesses." Now they are re-entering the embedded market by acquiring embedded software company Wind River as "part of Intel's strategy to grow its processor and software presence outside the traditional PC and server market segments into embedded systems and mobile handheld devices." Links are to Intel press releases.

There is a lot of speculation about this acquisition and Intel's next embedded move, such as Intel looking to buy Marvell to re-aquire the mobile XScale, or an Android Linux smartphone that outperforms Google's.

One area that may be affected by the acquisition is the newly available embedded OS virtualization technology, Wind River Hypervisor. It is currently only available on Intel and Power-PC processors, but support for other non-Intel processors is planned. This article at LinuxDevices.com claims that might change and gives an overview of the technology. Hypervisor currently only supports Linux and VxWorks, both Wind River supported OSes.

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