ARM to help make televisions smarter

ARM has announced a new processor licensing deal with television manufacturer LG, which will see the company’s sets deliver a range of internet services.

ARM to help make televisions smarter

LG will use the British chip designer’s ARM11 MPCore multicore processor and Mali GPU family in its next-generation sets.

ARM claims the deal will allow LG to offer a “Web 2.0” experience from the living room, including internet widgets, video-on-demand, games and online shopping.

The low-power Mali GPU is capable of supporting 1080p HD video and delivers a gaming performance comparable to that of the original Xbox, according to Jim Wallace, director of home segment marketing at ARM.

Wallace said the ARM11/Mali combination won’t replace dedicated games consoles, but will make it easier for net-connected televisions to deliver a range of additional services without a set-top box.

Wallace told PC Pro that ARM expects more people to access the internet through their television over time. “The internet will still be predominantly accessed on a PC, but it’s moving towards consumer devices,” he said. “It’s still very early days [in the evolution of the internet].”

The souped-up televisions are also becoming a fertile breeding ground for Linux, according to Wallace. “The television operating systems have moved to Linux,” he said. “Samsung’s [net-connected] television has Linux today, and all the major set-top-box manufacturers are moving to Linux”.

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