Blog on ARM Powered® devices
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I’m checking out a Tizen development kit prototype for the first time. I’m not sure I understand the meaning of it, it seems there is not coming much out of Maemo, Meego, Limo, Bada etc. At least not yet. This looks to be a semi-continuation of Intel’s and Nokia’s open source project which makes me extra dubious.
boredatwork.com published this interview with FXI Tech about the status of shipments for their awesome Exynos4 powered HDMI stick product.
Something to do with FXI adding USB host to the design causing some of the delay. Hopefully they start shipping in Scandinavia this month, and to all other pre-orders during the summer. I’d like to see this form factor mass manufactured and sold for around $69 retail and not $199. See the TI OMAP4 powered Always Innovating HDMI stick alternative where it’s said the BOM cost for such a platform may be as low as $30.
The Inevitable Convergence, Exynos 4412 getting too powerful for just being in a phone, SGS3 needs to use MHL for ICS+Chrome OS+Google TV
The new 32nm Exynos 4412 1.4Ghz Quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 with Quad-core Mali-400 (probably cranked up at a higher frequency than before) launched by Samsung in the Galaxy S3 looks to be totally amazing. It may be one of the absolute fastest ARM Processors to date. That brings awesomely smooth and fast Android 4 ICS user interfaces on the gorgeous 4.8″ 1280×720 pentile Super AMOLED HD screen. And with advances in Android, new features using hardware acceleration, they’ll always find a way to put to use the extra performance. But if these newest ARM Processors now come with enough memory bandwidth to run a full Laptop as smoothly as using x86, if these newest ARM Processors can run 1080p Set-top-box user interfaces at 60fps on any 55″ HDTV, if these newest ARM Processors have amazing GPU power that can in theory run console quality games even on a 1080p HDMI, then why aren’t there accessories and docks to allow for that? Why didn’t Samsung announce a range of Laptop Docks and Google TV docks for the Galaxy S3?
Here’s my quick concept image for an MHL LapDock accessory that I’d like to see accessory makers sell on the market at $99-$149 depending on the quality/size, it should be similar to the Motorola LapDock 500 Pro but designed for MHL phones:
MHL enables a new market for LapDocks similar to the Motorola Atrix series, where you dock your smartphone and it powers your ARM Powered Chrome OS Ultrabook, Google TV Set-top-box and Home Console.
I think it is important to notice the huge leap in performance year/year of these latest and upcoming new ARM Processors. The new Exynos 4412 is nearly 2x more powerful than last year’s Exnoys 4210. Not just by the doubling of cores, that doesn’t actually double performance but more like increases it by 50% (at same frequency, and only for very multi-threaded tasks), the main thing is the smaller process node design, the increased memory bandwidth, cleverer memory bandwidth architecture also enabling a faster higher clock speed Mali-400 GPU. Basically what you are getting is 2x more performance for less power consumption, that’s pretty exciting and pretty kick-ass in my book. And we are not even yet arrived at the ARM Cortex-A15 which then again upgrades the performance even more!
Now all that is needed is for Google and the industry to merge Android, Chrome OS and Google TV. When you dock it in a Laptop Dock or Desktop Dock, it should switch to a full Chrome OS mode (or Ubuntu, not to forget Microsoft is welcome to add the Windows 8 app for $29.99 in the Google Play store. Or somewhat pre-install “Windows 8 mode” as a secured dual-boot when partnering with the smartphone maker). When you dock it to a Multimedia Dock it should switch to a full Google TV mode, maybe even with HDMI input and IR blaster if the Dock supports that, and also the new GPU is now near XboX 360 power even though it’s not yet the Mali-T604 and Mali-T658 which increases graphics even further next year.
The issue is Samsung and some others are maybe afraid to disrupt their own existing markets of selling Laptops, Chromebooks, Set-top-boxes and new 3DTVs with built-in Google TV, so maybe, just maybe, at the corporate headquarters of Samsung they fear the inevitable convergence. But if Samsung doesn’t want to promote the convergence that these new post-PC ARM processors enable, then competitors have a wide open door to use that for marketing. One little pocketable soon enough wearable device can now power all your productivity, content consumption and entertainment. The performance has arrived, it’s only a matter of someone deciding to start making, selling and marketing the new user interfaces that enable the full convergence.
Samsung Galaxy S3 may be the first smartphone with full ARM TrustZone support for enabling 100% security in everything online
The newly announced Samsung Galaxy S3 may not only have an amazing new 32nm Quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor with a new accelerated higher frequency Quad-core Mali-400 GPU offering perhaps the fastest ARM SoC in the world at the moment. Samsung may also have done the right choice to fully enable and activate ARM TrustZone through the MobiCore integrated security platform directly onto the Exynos 4412 SoC. The Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) is joint venture between ARM (40%), Gemalto (30%) and Giesecke & Devrient (30%) which is currently in the process of getting approval from the European Commission for European Wide mass adoption as the default secure mobile authentication system.
While ARM TrustZone has been talked about for a while, it being supported in many ARM Processors, as far as I know it hasn’t been activated on any of those processors yet, the full Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) ecosystem has not yet been implemented in a mass market phone. The idea is to provide a 100% secure system for mobile payment, enterprise productivity, mobile banking applications, online commerce and premium content services. I believe ARM TrustZone can even be used for a fast and easy 100% secure authentication on your phone every time you log-in to your Google Account, and I believe that you may even set it up to 100% securely authenticate you when you log-in to any Open ID or other username/password protected websites on the Internet, Facebook, Twitter and any others included.
Basically consider these usage scenarios:
1. E-commerce: You click to buy something online, no need to type in credit card infos. Your phone automatically turns on in safe mode (identifiable by secure LED light lighting up on the side of the phone), you type your 4 digit pin code, payment 100% secure activated, the web page automatically updates, no click needed, and says thanks for your payment.
2. NFC or Online Payments/Money transfers: Tap your phone with the person you want to give some money to, or click on payment link in email or elsewhere online. Your phone automatically turns on in safe mode (identifiable by secure LED light lighting up on the side of the phone), you type your 4 digit pin code, payment or money transfer 100% secure activated. Both receiver and sender automatically get confirmation payment or money transfer has happened instantly.
3. Securely log-in to your Google or other web account. Click to login. Instead of using Google’s current 2-step verification (code being sent by SMS or Android app), a new easier, better and more secure 2-step verification system is established using ARM TrustZone TEE. As soon as you click to login, you don’t even need to type your password in the web browser, your phone automatically turns on in safe mode (identifiable by secure LED light lighting up on the side of the phone), you type your 4 digit pin code, you are 100% securely logged into your Google account.
Etc. Same system for 100% securely logging on to corporate networks and applications. You can also setup different pin codes depending on the different class of applications. For example your important payment systems may have a different pin code than basic website logons.
The idea of the ARM TrustZone Trusted Execution Environment is that once that security LED light is turned on on your phone, you can be assured that what you see on the screen is the encrypted alternative OS environment to authenticate you and authorize actions that it then encrypts and sends back through the Android OS to the Internet. For example it displays “Paying $20 to X” as you enter your pin code and click OK or you click cancel if you don’t agree. Again using encryption. Using systems of 128bit encryption, in theory this system should be 100% secure. As long as users always make sure to check that the security LED light is on on their phone when they enter their pin codes and click for authorizations.
If implemented correctly, ARM TrustZone will not only much improve security online, it will also make authentication and authorization processes easier and faster online. With the Galaxy S3 and the correct implementation of ETT support throughout the Internet, the Chrome browser, Android, you may never need to remember usernames and passwords for all websites again, you just use the same few PIN codes on your phone to do all your authentications, authorizations and every type of secure authenticated activities on the Internet.
I am very excited about the upcoming mass adoption of ARM TrustZone, because I believe we are going to see an explosion of awesomely advanced applications for secure authentication, online payments, mobile payments and the feeling for users is going to be that they are soon going to trust using their phones to replace their wallets, passports, credit cards, and that people are going to have a tool to be able to trust any and every website, as those will never be able to see your passwords as consumers will always be protected by the normal set of consumer protections and that online scams, online security breaches will be a thing of the past. ARM TrustZone Trusted Execution Environment means the end of paper money, it means the end of ticketing, it means the end of credit cards, it means the end of membership cards, it means the end of usernames and passwords online.
Here is the press release:
G&D announces MobiCore® integrated security platform to support Samsung GALAXY S III in Europe
Munich, May 4, 2012 – Giesecke & Devrient (G&D) today announced that its MobiCore security platform will be integrated in Samsung GALAXY S III smartphones distributed in Europe. Thanks to MobiCore, the NFC-capable smartphone from Samsung will be the first mobile device to boast a protected area on its application processor in which security-sensitive applications can be securely run and downloaded dynamically. The MobiCore platform will provide a secure execution environment for mobile payments authentication, emails or corporate VPN access.
The first application installed in the Mobicore-protected area on the Samsung GALAXY S III is a digital rights management (DRM) application which provides digital content with effective protection against misuse. In addition, G&D’s Trusted Service Management (TSM) solution will enable organizations such as network operators and banks to install and customize additional security-critical apps in the protected area of the smartphone. Samsung GALAXY S III, with integrated MobiCore security platform, will be made commercially available first in Europe and will then be rolled out globally.
- Google Wallet should use ARM TrustZone for 100% security (armdevices.net)
- ARM, Gemalto and G&D form joint-venture to secure mobile devices, improve privacy (thenextweb.com)
The price seems quite good for a 7″ 1024×600 tablet, just $100 with a built-in 3G modem.
Boeye shows a Pearl E-ink based e-reader using the Rockchip RK2818 processor and a software optimization for fast page turns. They claim it’s as fast as the latest Kindle Reader.
Megan and Camille’s technology show, showing Desktop Android features on the external monitor using MHL
Here’s a video by two young MHL experts. 50 million MHL devices were shipped in 2011 according to Techcrunch.com. One of the most important improvements in Android that I am looking forward to is the increase of Desktop features on Android (also demonstrated in this video: Using a Mobile Device as a Desktop Computer and Part 2: Using an Android Device as a Desktop). The usability being improved when Android is being used on a Monitor or HDTV using the MHL output of some of the latest modern phones having the latest fastest Dual-core and Quad-core ARM Processors.
The point is that the latest smartphone processors with MHL output to a monitor or TV and a Bluetooth keyboard/mouse and some of the latest Android user interface features such as Chrome for Android on Ice Cream Sandwich should provide for as smooth a Desktop experience as using an Intel Atom netbook!