XMOS and Silicon Labs join forces to deliver the next wave in programmable SoCs

New XMOS xCORE-XA architecture features the world’s most energy-friendly ARM technology

AUSTIN, Texas and BRISTOL, UK, 24th October 2013 – XMOS, the leader in multicore microcontrollers, and Silicon Labs (Nasdaq: SLAB), a leader in high-performance, analog-intensive, mixed-signal ICs, today announced a technology partnership that allows XMOS to integrate world-leading energy friendly ARM® technology into its xCORE™ multicore microcontrollers to produce the next wave in programmable system-on-chip products (SoCs).

The partnership builds on the revolutionary, configurable xCORE multicore microcontroller architecture from XMOS, which allows customers to program in software the exact mix of peripherals and interfaces that they need and provides timing-precise execution of high level software code, with multiple 32bit processor cores available to share the work in parallel. Partnering with Silicon Labs enables XMOS to add technology from EFM32™ Gecko – the world’s most energy-friendly ARM Cortex-M3 based MCUs – to this architecture, creating the xCORE-XA (eXtended Architecture) family of products.

“This partnership creates a completely new category of programmable system on chip,” said Nigel Toon, XMOS CEO. “Working with Silicon Labs has allowed us to combine hardware levels of real-time performance, configurable peripherals from our configurable xCORE multicore microcontroller technology, together with the worlds most energy efficient ARM® Cortex™ MCU technology from Silicon Labs, to create the next wave of programmable system-on-chip solution that, for the first time, allows a programmable technology to support low-energy battery-powered applications.”

“We have been working closely with XMOS over the last 12 months to help them bring this new class of product to market,” said Geir Forre, Vice President and General Manager of Silicon Labs’ Microcontroller Products. “It is exciting to see our EFM32 Gecko MCU technology being used in a leading multicore microcontroller architecture that delivers such flexibility. The result of this partnership between Silicon Labs and XMOS is a completely new type of programmable system on chip product that combines our industry-leading energy-friendly technology with a unique level of system configuration and performance.”

The new xCORE-XA family of products (also announced today in a separate release) are the first xCORE devices to feature low-energy ARM Cortex-M3 based Gecko MCU technology developed by Energy Micro, recently acquired by Silicon Labs. The new chips allow customers to include ARM binary code within their xCORE designs and give them access to ultra-energy- efficient peripherals and I/O technology.

XMOS will provide a completely integrated development and debug environment for xCORE-XA as part of the xTIMEcomposer suite of development tools, allowing customers to create their system in C or C++ while taking advantage of the complete xSOFTip™ library of peripheral interfaces and functions. Designers will also be able to take advantage of existing Silicon Labs software tools to access code libraries and documentation for the ARM® Cortex™ M3 processor core.

XMOS will be demonstrating the new xCORE-XA products, featuring the Silicon Labs Gecko MCU technology, at the ARM TechCon 2013 conference and exhibition in San Jose, CA, October 30th 2013.

About XMOS

XMOS is a young fabless semiconductor company based in Bristol, UK. The wide range of xCORE multicore microcontrollers with Hardware-Response provide a unique combination of parallel multitasking, deterministic performance, support from a large library of software-defined peripherals, allowing you to meet your exact design requirements. This makes xCORE multicore microcontrollers ideal for demanding embedded applications in audio, automotive, consumer and industrial products, where other microcontrollers struggle. XMOS provides xTIMEcomposer Studio, an easy to use development system, that makes it simple to design complex embedded systems.