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Adlink tips Android-ready ARM modules for under $100

Dec 8, 2011 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 2 views

Adlink announced it will release a range of ARM-powered COMs (computer-on-modules) next year that sell for “far below $100,” supporting operating systems including Android, Linux, and Windows 8. The devices, which will consume less than three Watts, will employ a still-unnamed, ARM-oriented format recently announced by Kontron.

Back in September, German embedded manufacturing giant Kontron announced plans to develop a computer on module (COM) format that would support both single- and multicore ARM processors for Linux, Windows CE, and Windows platforms. Last month, it provided some additional details of the format — which is still nameless, as far as we're aware — and noted that it had garnered Adlink as a supporter.

A Dec. 8 announcement from Adlink now underlines the extent of that support. The company says it will present early concept versions of COMs using the format at the Embedded World show in Nuremberg next February. Production versions of the modules will go on sale later in the year for "far below $100," Adlink adds.

According to Adlink, the modules will feature power consumption under three Watts and support for LVDS, HDMI, and DisplayPort displays. Potential CPUs weren't announced, but the company said it "is working closely with Texas Instruments, who is the number one provider of ARM processors."

The Adlink-supported COM standard will come in full and half-sized versions

The module standard is based on a 314-pin MXM 3.0 connector that allows a total package height of less than 5mm (0.2 inches) for both module and carrier, Adlink says. Full-sized modules will measure 82 x 80mm (3.23 x 3.15 inches), while half-sized modules measure 82 x 50mm (3.23 x 1.97 inches).

For further details and MXM background, see our earlier coverage.

Adlink joins the ARMs race

Noting its recent release of an ARM-based, Android-ready handheld computer (the TIOT 2000), Adlink stated its "commitment to the new modular form factor is just the first step in adopting ARM/RISC platforms, with all other departments soon to follow in embracing ARM/RISC and leveraging the inroads made by this new COM standard."

While drivers for x86 platforms are generic and mostly provided by component vendors, the support burden on ARM/RISC hardware suppliers is much higher, Adlink noted. As a result, the company said, it's "investing heavily in a new infrastructure to be able to provide driver development, customization and application support that is specifically focused on ARM/RISC for all their product lines, not just for COM modules."

Henk van Bremen, Adlink's product director for embedded computing, stated, "For the first time, embedded customers will have the same wide choice of operating systems on ARM as on x86, enabling efficient implementations of new and complementary embedded applications based on ultra low-power devices that were not possible with x86 based platforms. Adlink will be able to offer a wide range of OS support including Linux, Android, Windows CE, Windows 8, VxWorks, and QNX."


Jonathan Angel can be reached at [email protected] and followed at

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