ARM, the British chip design house that powers pretty much every mobile phone out there, rarely buys other companies or their technology. However, a week ago it picked up Sensinode for its internet of things protocol work, and now it has bought in Cadence Design Systems’ PANTA family of display controller cores.
The PANTA cores support the use of advanced multimedia applications on high-resolution mobile device displays. They were developed in partnership with ARM, so are already nicely integrated with ARM’s Mali graphics technology.
Mobile screen resolution is going through something of a growth spurt, thanks to Apple’s retina displays and the consequent boost in pixel count in the Android world. Now with 4K video shooting becoming a feature of the latest smartphones, screens are likely to become even more densely packed.
The more pixels you have, the more power you need to support them. And with power efficiency being paramount for any kind of mobile device, it’s not hard to see why ARM feels the need to shore up this side of its portfolio.