ARM has unveiled Cortex-M0+ processor that is touted by the company as the world's most power-efficient 32-bit microprocessor. According to ARM, the Cortex-M0+ can operate on 9µA/MHz, i.e., the chip can operate on nine microamperes per megahertz (1 microampere = 1 millionth of an ampere).
The Cortex-M0+ processor is designed for intelligent sensors and smart control systems in a broad range of applications including home appliances, white goods like refrigerators, air-conditioning units and washing machines, medical monitoring, metering, lighting and power and motor control devices. The processor will bring network connectivity to these devices.
Besides allowing them to be connected to networks, the Cortex-M0+ processor enables specific applications to be run off these devices, thereby delivering increased intelligence to them without sacrificing power consumption. The processor only consumes around one third of the energy of any current 8- or 16-bit processor, while delivering significantly higher performance.
Currently, two firms have licensed the technology from ARM; they are Freescale and NXP Semiconductors.