National Semiconductor Announces New Development Platforms for Next Generation Information Appliances Based On Microsoft Windows CE .NET
Enhancements to the Windows CE .NET developers' platform help OEMs design Geode processor-based systems quickly
International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Las Vegas --
National Semiconductor (NYSE: NSM), a Microsoft Windows Embedded gold partner and recent recipient of Microsoft's silicon vendor of the year award, announced today that developers of next generation information appliances and mobile devices featuring National's Geode™ processor can now enjoy ease-of-design offered through both Microsoft's new Windows CE .NET operating system and National's development and reference platforms.
Windows CE .NET includes a Geode processor-based board support package that reduces the time required to get the operating system working with National's information appliance development platforms. Using this board support package, developers can create highly flexible, connected and compact devices featuring the Geode X86 processor. The board support package includes all of the device graphics, audio, USB, and MacPHYTER™ Ethernet drivers to enable designers to quickly bring information appliances to market.
The combination of National's Geode processor and Windows CE .NET promises to enable a myriad of connected devices with unparalleled capabilities. Designed specifically for the information appliance market, National's highly integrated Geode processor family offers the best balance of the "three Ps" - price, power and performance. The Windows CE .NET operating system complements this strategy by delivering a rich platform for multimedia, Internet browsing, applications and Web services.
"When creating next-generation mobile devices, embedded systems developers look for solutions that deliver the most advanced technologies to enable a rich end-user experience," said Keith White, senior director of marketing for the Embedded Appliance Platforms Group at Microsoft Corp. "National's Geode processor combined with Windows CE .NET allows developers to bring powerful, connected devices such as smart displays, set-top boxes and thin clients to market faster and less expensively than in the past."
In addition to the Geode board support packages, Windows CE .NET will ship with drivers for National's Bluetooth™ Compact Flash card solution. This will enable developers of portable devices to easily build complete systems that take advantage of National's industry leading Bluetooth solutions for wireless connectivity anytime, anywhere.
"Working together, Microsoft and National are helping developers shorten time-to-market by providing them with flexible easy-to-use reference platforms," said Mike Polacek, vice president of National Semiconductor's Information Appliance division. "The combination of Windows CE .NET and Geode technology is a great solution for mobile personal access devices, thin clients, set-top boxes, and residential gateway products.
Several devices featuring the Geode processor and running Windows CE .NET are already available today. These include the new ThinSTAR Web Services Terminal™ from NCD, wireless web tablets from Tatung and Philips, and the iCEBOX™ FlipScreen, a web-enabled entertainment center designed specifically for the kitchen (and displayed today at the CES keynote by Bill Gates). All of these devices can be seen at CES at either the Microsoft Home booth located in the Central hall, booth number 1041, or at the National booth by appointment, located in the new South hall, 2nd floor, booth number M17631.
About National Semiconductor Products
The award-winning Geode family of processors is x86-based with MMX™ support that integrates fully-accelerated 2D graphics, a memory controller with 64-bit SDRAM interface, 16KB L1 Cache and PCI bus host controller. The low-power chip integrates sound, graphics, memory control and the PCI interface.
National's development platforms featuring the Geode processor enable OEMs to develop the software and hardware for a customized IA product. The reference designs also feature the Geode processor and are a proven schematic and bill of materials that allow designers to cut substantial time, cost and risk out of their design cycle.
The development platforms available from National that feature the Geode processor and Windows CE .NET include the SP4SC30 and SP4GX10, for development of both WebPAD™ devices and thin clients. Also available are two reference platforms, the Geode SP1SC10 for developing set-top boxes and the SP2SC20 for thin clients.
The platforms include a full set of multimedia functions and peripheral interfaces and are ideal for the development of digital and video-on-demand DSL set-top boxes, Internet enabled televisions, personal access devices and thin clients. Both the reference and development platforms can be ordered from Arrow Electronics, Inc. or through a National sales representative.
About National Semiconductor
National Semiconductor is the premier analog company driving the information age. Combining real-world analog and state-of-the-art digital technology, the company is focused on the fast growing markets for wireless handsets; displays; information appliances; and information infrastructure. With headquarters in Santa Clara, California, National reported sales of $2.1 billion for its last fiscal year and has about 9,800 employees worldwide.