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Teeny GPU targets wearables, Things

One-third of a square mm

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This GPU isn't going to get Bitcoin enthusiasts worked up, but from a “wow that's small” point of view it's interesting: Vivante is shipping a range of GPUs that ranges from 0.3 mm2 up to 1.6 mm2 in size for IoT and wearables applications.

The four devices the company's announced include two VGA/WVGA devices (the 100-200 MHz GC Nano Lite and 200 MHz GC Nano, which support NanoUI vector graphics and OpenGL ES 2.0 / NanoGL respectively); and two 720p devices (the 200-400 MHz GC Nano Ultra and GC Nano Ultra3, running OpenGL 2.0 and OpenGL 3.0 respectively, both with NanoGL support).

The software driver stack with the processors provides APIs to Vivante's NanoUI for “no-OS” implementations, and its NanoGL, designed to work with operating systems like embedded Linux, Tizen, Android, and Android Wear, “and other RTOSs that require OpenGL 2.0 in the smallest memory footprint.”

Vivante is stressing low power, low memory footprint, and small drivers in the design, since wearables and IoT devices are typified by highly-constrained environments.

As the company's CEO Wei-jin Dai put it: “we developed the GCNano Series with careful attention to the ultra-fine details like silicon size, low power, memory footprint, driver size, bandwidth reduction and display controller / UI pairing, minimal CPU overhead and image quality to create an amazing user experience on these new MCUs/MPUs.” ®

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