ARM Ltd is getting serious against Intel and AMD, and are now going to compete with the chip giants in the high-end and server computing market, where competition is tight. ARM has announced their new ARMv8 architecture, the first one to include a 64-bit instruction set. ARM CTO, Mike Mullar says:
ARMv8 will enable the development of ARM architecture compatible devices that can be designed to maximize the benefits across both 32-bit and 64-bit application areas. This will bring the advantages of energy-efficient 64-bit computing to new applications such as high-end servers and computing, as well as offering backwards compatibility and migration for existing software through a consistent architecture.
ARMv8 will have both 32- and 64-bit modes, like todays x86/x64 CPUs, and this should help transition ARM into the 64-bit world for existing applications. ARM have dubbed the 32-bit mode "AArch32" and the 64-bit mode "AArch64".
With Microsoft's endorsement of the ARM architecture and Windows 8 having the ability to run natively on ARM hardware, they really have a shot at the market. Microsoft exec KD Hallman saying:
ARM is an important partner for Microsoft. The evolution of ARM to support a 64-bit architecture is a significant development for ARM and for the ARM ecosystem.
NVIDIA agrees, who are already selling their Tegra ARM-based line of products. NVIDIAs Dan Vivoli says:
The combination of Nvidia's leadership in energy-efficient, high-performance processing and the new ARMv8 architecture will enable game-shifting breakthroughs in devices across the full range of computing - from smartphones through to supercomputers.
Can ARM take Intel on? Will ARM be powerful enough out of the gate to take the already shaken AMD from their Bulldozer launch? 2012 will be very interesting indeed. For more of a read, definitely check out the source.