Quiz Of The Week: ARM – British Chip Designer

Peter Judge has been involved with tech B2B publishing in the UK for many years, working at Ziff-Davis, ZDNet, IDG and Reed. His main interests are networking security, mobility and cloud

ARM chips are everywhere. But what do you know about the company?

ARM Holdings manages and develops the ARM processors which are at the heart of many devices you know and love. But we hear a lot less about it than we hear about Intel.

Spinning out of the Cambridge tech whirlwind of the 1980s, ARM has created a RISC processor which has taken the world by storm. But you never see the name on the outside package of the devices you use. There is no “ARM inside” campaign! But the ARM processors are no less important than their big, hot and power-hungry competitors.

ARM yourselves!

ARM chipARM emerged when Reduced Instruction Set Computing (RISC) was a new concept, and the big boys all had a hand to play. Sun had its SPARC, IBM had Power, Ditital Equipment had its Alpha,  there was MIPS, and HP had its PA technology. Even Intel had a go, with something called the i960. Of that crowd, IBM’s Power and SPARC (now owned by Oracle) still carry on in the sheltered space of their own server markets, and MIPS still exists, but none has succeeded as well as ARM.

ARM’s business partner list already reads like who’s who of the IT industry. Now, it looks set on expanding into the server market, and taking on companies which have been ruling this sector for decades.

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