Intel's StrongArm makes way for XScale

Intel has warned developers that its SA-1110 StrongArm processor will not be available for much longer.

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Intel has warned developers that its SA-1110 StrongArm processor will not be available for much longer.

The chip, which has served as the processor in several generations of PDAs from numerous companies, has been superseded by Intel's XScale line. Intel told developers that it would continue accepting orders for only another six months.

"Everybody is transitioning off 206MHz StrongArm processors and onto 400MHz XScale processors," said Intel spokesman Mark Miller.

XScale is already used in many Intel processor-based PDAs and, with the launch earlier this week of the latest version that includes a baseband processor, Intel hoped the chip would also be popular with mobile telephone handset makers.

The StrongArm processor was the product of a 1995 licensing agreement between ARM and Digital Equipment (DEC), which was later acquired by Compaq Computer.

DEC produced several StrongArm microprocessors based on the Risc 32-bit processor core that were used in products such as network terminals. In late 1997, Intel struck a deal to acquire the StrongArm technology and business from DEC for $700m (£433).

Intel then moved StrongArm beyond the computer market and into devices such as digital set top boxes, web-enabled screen phones, point-of-sale terminals and mobile telephones.

The chip became a favourite of PDA and mobile device developers and customers included Casio, Compaq, Hewlett-Packard, LG Electronics, NEC, Sharp and Toshiba.



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