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Arm Offers Lower Cost Cortex-A5 License

LONDON, Oct. 22, 2018 – 

Arm is now offering a low-cost route to developing Cortex-A5 based Linux-capable ASICs for embedded Internet of Things (IoT) devices featuring advanced edge processing, with a new one-year license fee of $75,000. This fee provides access to the CPU IP and one year of design support, through Arm's DesignStart program.

Arm says it is offering the lower cost license in response to the developer community requesting easy access to a Linux-capable Arm processor. A 2017 EETimes study on embedded markets revealed that 82% of developers were considering using Linux or Android in their next design.

Phil Burr, Arm's director of portfolio product management, told EETimes that the addition of Cortex-A5 to DesignStart makes it much easier to create an ASIC and unlock the world of Linux on Arm to many developers. "We're broadening our access generally to companies who want to develop embedded Linux," Burr said.

Hence the Cortex-A5 processor can now be easily accessed through a web portal and a simplified contract, enabling rapid system-on-chip development with a scalable and configurable Armv7-A processor.

The announcement coincides with Arm's Tech Symposia, which kicks off in China Monday and continues in Taiwan, Korea, India and Japan over the next few weeks. Commenting on the reason for its launch coinciding with the China event rather than at TechCon last week, Burr told EE Times that over 40% of licensees for its Cortex-M0 and Cortex-M3 under its DesignStart program are from China, so it's an important market. However, he told us that the licenses would be sold under Arm global rather than its China joint venture.

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