RealTime IT News

IBM Unveils Net Appliance Chips

IBM said Friday it would release a new family of chips for Net appliances.

The company said its PowerPC Internet Appliance Platform (IAP) includes a microprocessor and a series of optional features in a system-on-a-chip design. Manufacturers can select precisely which features they want.

IBM says that with PowerPC IAP, it will assemble most of the chip in advance but that manufacturers can still add unique features for their specific product. That will encourage innovation by manufacturers, IBM claimed.

"We're merging custom chip technology with consumer electronic products," said Scottie Ginn, IBM Miroelectronics' vice president for pervasive technology. "The one-size-fits-all days of PC microprocessors are over. Consumer electronics that attach to the Internet will come in all types of sizes and shapes, each demanding unique things of the chips that drive them."

IBM said that the chipset is part of its strategy to be involved in all manner of ubiquitous computing. It said it is actively researching chipsets that support features such as speech recognition and encryption without consuming more power.

The company did not provide precise availability and pricing information about the new chips.