Freescale Semiconductor moved another step closer to achieving true high definition (HD) video for mobile devices with the introduction of the i.MX27 applications processor. Announced at the company's annual technology forum, the i.MX27 brings an enhanced level of video, graphics and connectivity to mobile multimedia devices such as video and voice over Internet Protocol (V2IP) cordless and mobile phones, and portable media players.
"The i.MX27 pushes advanced video and graphics to a new level for our customers' mobile applications," said Berardino Baratta, general manager of Freescale's multimedia application division. "Video continues to be a key driver in the mobile space, and for applications such as videoconferencing, the highest resolution is required to deliver the optimal user experience. Building on the success of the i.MX21, the i.MX27 moves us another step closer to delivering true HD-quality video solutions for mobile and handheld applications."
i.MX27 delivers enhanced video and connectivity
Moving one step closer to HD is achieved via an integrated enhanced multimedia hardware accelerator (eMMA) in i.MX27 that efficiently processes MPEG4, H.263 and H.264 video streams at D1 (DVD-quality, 720x480 screen resolution) resolution. The eMMA performs all of the complex pre- and post-video processing including deblock, dering, color space conversion, zoom and image scaling in parallel to video encoding and decoding. This leaves the powerful 400 MHz ARM926EJ-S(TM) engine free to work on other tasks.
The i.MX27 provides designers greater flexibility with an abundance of connectivity options and serial and expansion ports. Add USB On-the-Go to enable connectivity to a wide range of external devices--cameras, displays, TVs, printers and more, plus an ATA hard disc drive and an Ethernet MAC on-chip, and OEMs are able to competitively differentiate their products and provide a variety of features to their customers.
Smart Speed(TM) technology enables advanced power management
The i.MX27 multimedia applications processor is architected with Freescale's Smart Speed technology, an intelligent integrative approach that uses hardware accelerators to offload the CPU and a crossbar switch to bring parallelism to the system. The result is a processor that performs with a much higher clock speed, but conserves power for extended battery life.
New to the i.MX27 is Freescale's innovative Dynamic Process Temperature Compensation (DPTC) mechanism that lowers the voltage to the minimum level needed to support the current operating frequency, saving up to 50 percent on power consumption. The i.MX27 also offers a variety of power saving modes, giving designers the ability to make trade-offs between power consumption in stand-by and recovery times.
The i.MX27 incorporates Freescale's Platform Independent Security Architecture, a combination of security features that provides a high level of confidence for carriers, content providers and consumers.
For carriers, the security architecture provides protection features to help guard against malicious service attacks, theft of services, configuration protection and concerns with cloning. For content providers, it helps block illegal access to licensed content, thereby protecting against unauthorized use and distribution. And for consumers, private data is designed to be inaccessible, helping protect against identify theft.
The i.MX27 is sampling in limited quantities now. Volume production is slated for the first quarter of 2007.