ARM’s second quarter report describes 25% growth in revenue, 29 new customers including 9 Cortex A and 12 Cortex M processors. This is proof that investment in research and development of ARMed devices will continue strongly for the next few years.
The reasons for this growth are clear:
- low power consumption is vital for mobile devices,
- people love small cheap computers, and
- because ARM makes modest demands for royalties manufacturers actually make more money from selling devices at lower cost than they can tacking on huge fees for Wintel.
The last point cannot be overemphasized. Hardware makers are running tiny margins on devices with Wintel inside so that the licence for that other OS includes most of the margin. With ARM and Android/Linux margins are many times larger and the margin is mostly in the selling of the hardware not the software and not the chips. This motivates hardware makers to innovate and to produce products that consumers want and not just tolerate. The idea that a small number of businesses hold all innovation on the planet is false and deflating rapidly as even small players can do amazing things with this technology. The Wintel monopoly is on its last legs as consumers can find other systems on retail shelves for the first time in decades anywhere on the planet.