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Norwegian firm reveals ARM/x86 hybrid prototype

Posted on Tuesday, September 14 2010 @ 02:21:03 CEST by

Bit Tech reports a Norwegian firm named CUPP Computing has presented the Computicator, a hybrid All-in-One PC that features an Intel Core 2 Duo 2.3GHz processor as well as a Texas Instruments OMAP 3430 ARM Cortex-A8 based chip. Both systems are active at the same time, via an ALT-TAB-style system users can switch between Windows 7 Professional and Ubuntu LXDE Linux on the fly with no reboot required. The benefit of such a design is that it enables you to to drastically cut your power consumption. The company aims to deliver a product based on this technology by Q2 2011.
The all-in-one PC, which the Norwegian company describes as a demo platform for its patented hybrid technology, combines an Intel Core Duo 2.3GHz processor with dedicated 4GB RAM with a Texas Instruments OMAP 3430 ARM Cortex A8-based processor running at 720MHz with its own 512MB RAM. A single 320GB hard disk and 16" LCD display are shared between both platforms, as is a keyboard and trackpad along with HDMI output and three USB ports.

At its heart, then, it's two computers with a few shared components, but it's the closest thing to an ARM-based desktop likely to make it in to the average person's home or office. CUPP claims that by integrating the ARM processor into the southbridge, a technique for which it owns a patent, it's possible to "deliver functionality previously impractical in a personal computer, and [gives] users the flexibility to use the PC in ways that best suits their needs."

The company isn't above dropping the green card, either, claiming that "if implemented on a wide scale, this technology would have a significant impact on global power consumption."



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