OLEDs Shine In Phones, TVs, Lights

OLEDs are coming—everywhere. While the new iPhone 7 models do not have organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays, those handsets are likely to be the last Apple will offer before it makes the smartphone transition to OLED displays next year. The Apple Watch, however, does have a flexible OLED display with a sapphire crystal cover or an Ion-X glass cover, and the Apple Watch Series 2 ... » read more

Lower Power Plus Better Performance

The tradeoff between power and performance is becoming less about one versus the other, and more about a dual benefit, as new computing and chip architectures begin rolling out. Neural networking, which is one of the hot buttons for any system that relies on lots of distributed sensors, is essential to get a true picture of what is happening around a car moving down the highway at 65 miles ... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Sept. 27

Self-organizing circuits Researchers studying the behavior of nanoscale materials at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory discovered that due an unusual feature of certain complex oxides called phase separation, individual nanoscale regions can behave as self-organized circuit elements, which could support new multifunctional types of computing architectures. "Within a... » read more

Optimization Challenges For 10nm And 7nm

Optimization used to be a simple timing against area tradeoff but not anymore. As we go to each new node, the tradeoffs become more complicated involving additional aspects of the design that used to be dealt with in isolation. Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss these issues with Krishna Balachandran, director of product management for low power products at [getentity id="22032" ... » read more

How Do We Get To Full Throttle In Mobile?

By Govind Wathan and Brian Fuller With each new generation of mobile device, we look forward to running the latest apps—especially games. (It's amazing how immersive mobile games have become in just a few years). We’re consumers but we’re also engineers, and here we’re faced with a huge challenge. It’s not just the games that get more powerful. A whole new generation of virtual ... » read more

Save Power And Area By Eliminating Redundant Resets

Resets initialize hardware by forcing it into a known state, either on design start up or to recover from an error. In today’s SoC designs, it is not uncommon to see designs with millions of registers that have resets. Unfortunately, many of these resets are redundant. Leaving these unnecessary register resets in the design leads to increased power consumption, excess area, and routing conges... » read more

Is Low Power Coverage Achievable?

Back in 2005, yes, before the invention of the iPhone, I made a slide to educate users on what to cover in Low Power Verification. Using a simple 3 island test case, I illustrated that verification had to be done in 4 states of operation, with 8 transitions and 16 sequences to be verified. This is after pruning the theoretically possible set of 8 states for on/off voltage islands. More than ... » read more

Power Management Heats Up

Power management has been talked about a lot recently, especially when it comes to mobile devices. But power is only a part of the issue—and perhaps not even the most important part. Heat is the ultimate limiter. If you cannot comfortably place the device on your face or wrist, then you will not have a successful product. Controlling heat, at the micro and macro levels, is an important asp... » read more

What Cognitive Computing Means For Chip Design

Cognitive computing. Artificial intelligence. Machine learning. All of these are concepts aim to make human types of problems computable, whether it be a self-driving car, a health care-providing robot, or a walking and talking assistant robot for the home or office. R&D teams around the world are working to create a whole new world of machines more intelligent than humans. Designing sys... » read more

Running Out Of Energy?

The anticipated and growing energy requirements for future computing needs will hit a wall in the next 24 years if the current trajectory is correct. At that point, the world will not produce enough energy for all of the devices that are expected to be drawing power. A report issued by the Semiconductor Industry Association and Semiconductor Research Corp., bases its conclusions on system-le... » read more

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