ARM and TSMC tape-out Cortex-A57 on 16nm FinFET technology
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ARM has announced the tape-out of the Cortex-A57 at TSMC’s semiconductor foundry using a commercially available tool chain. The new chip is fabricated utilizing the Taiwanese foundry’s 16nm FinFET process and constitutes the first step between ARM and TSMC in optimizing 64-bit ARMv8 processors on FinFET process technologies.
Apparently it took the two companies just six-months from design to tape-out. This first ARM Cortex-A57 processor application opens the door to customer implementations on 16nm FinFET ARM SoCs.
ARM’s flagship Cortex-A57 processor is scheduled to find a home in the compute intensive environments of tablets, computers and even server products. Though it can be used as a stand-alone processor, the company also plans to pair the high-performance Cortex-A57 with the more efficient Cortex-A53 in what ARM likes to call big.LITTLE configuration. The Cortex-A53 is currently ARM's most efficient application processor, providing more muscle while using less energy when compared to the company’s Cortex-A9 processor.
Unfortunately, no time-frame was given as to when all this new technology will make its way into actual products.