'Internet of things' - connecting user devices and saving power
New developments regarding the use, sourcing or capacity capability of energy can sometimes lead to the adoption of this technology by electricity suppliers.
The uptake of new systems or applications - recent examples include the introduction of solar and wind power - may mean long- and short-term reductions in price and increases in supply efficiency, to the benefit of both residential and commercial electricity consumers.
With the announcement of a new kind of microprocessor, use of electricity may become even more efficient.
The 90 nanometre Cortex-Mo+ chip, developed by ARM Holdings, uses 30 per cent less power but takes up no extra space on a circuit board.
And while all that may sound a little complicated to the average household electricity user, its applications for microcontrollers might be easier to understand.
The chip is being pitched to makers of smart control devices, as ARM says it allows more intelligent integration of white goods, medical monitoring, metering, lighting, power and motor control gadgets that use wireless, sensor or signal processors.
Basically, the Cortex-Mo+ chip could usher in an age of "the internet of things" - a network of intelligent, energy-efficient appliance control.
Microprocessor Report editor Tom Halfhill endorsed the new design, saying: "Ubiquitous network connectivity is useful for almost everything - from adaptive room lighting and online video gaming to smart sensors and motor control. But it requires extremely low-cost, low-power processors that still can deliver good performance. The ARM Cortex-M0+ processor… will be suitable for a broad range of industrial and consumer applications."
Posted by Charlie Moore