ARM’s DynamIQ chip architecture will boost AI processing by as much as 50 times

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ARM, the holding company that designs chips powering billions of smartphones, cars, and mobile devices, announced a platform on Monday that promises drastic improvements in performance and efficiency. It’s called DynamIQ, and it’ll launch in new devices beginning later this year.

DynamIQ, which ARM calls the “biggest [architectural] shift since [the] 64-bit ARMv8-A in 2011,” targets automotive, networking, server, and personal computing devices. It’s aimed at the roughly 100-plus billion devices expected to ship with ARM-based chips by 2021.

ARM is projected to ship 100 billion chips between 2017 and 2021 to its more than 450 silicon partners and 1,000 community partners, which doubles the 50 billion it shipped between 2013 and 2017. More than 3.5 billion people use ARM-based devices today, the company said in a press release.

“We see it as our responsibility to address the industry’s demand of ubiquitous AI, autonomous systems, and accelerating the integration of virtual worlds toward a mixed-reality experience,” an ARM spokesperson said. “DynamIQ technology is a monumental shift in multicore microarchitecture for the industry, and the foundation for future ARM Cortex-A processors.”

ARM’s DynamIQ chips boast features that improve performance without compromising efficiency. A redesigned memory interface enables faster data access and enhanced power management. A compact “single-cluster” design consolidates multiple components in a single chip, and enhanced big.LITTLE, an ARM technology that intelligently switches between processor cores, shares memory between cores more efficiently.

DynamIQ isn’t just about big-picture improvements — individual CPU cores are now a lot more capable as well. They feature fine-grained speed control that ramps them up and down as needed, and redesigned scaling that responds to changes in power and thermal conditions. And thanks to DynamIQ’s anticipatory systems, they can switch between on and off quicker than ARM’s current chip generation.

Those performance improvements translate to meaningful gains in the areas of artificial intelligence and automation. DynamIQ’s dedicated set of AI instructions will offer a boost of up to 50 times in machine-learning routines within 3-5 years, ARM said, and optimized connections between CPU cores and specialized “accelerator hardware” will deliver up to 10 times better performance.

Autonomous and connected cars also stand to gain. DynamIQ’s built-in technologies will bring “increased safety capabilities” and “enable partners to build systems for safe operation under failure conditions.”

“DynamIQ is just the latest in ARM’s growing list of technology leadership milestones to get the industry one step closer to our ultimate vision,” an ARM spokesperson said. “[We want to] transform technology experiences through a total computing approach that creates a vast network of securely connected smart devices that enhance every aspect of peoples’ lives,”

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