The next-generation smart embedded devices that integrate sensing, Internet of Things (IoT), terminal and cloud applications will succeed handsets, tablets and smart TVs to become the driving force for a new wave of the development of the information and communication technology (ICT) industry.
The speed of NAND flash memory has made a rapid progress. The ONFI v4.0 that is under development will use the 1.2VDDR3 transmission interface technology. Single channel flash transmission rate can reach the speed of 800 MB/s. As a result, solid state drive (SSD) products adopting SATAIII (6Gbps) as the transmission interface are about to face an insurmountable bottleneck.
In the industrial PC market, there is strong demand for high-performance, highly reliable and ruggedized SSDs (solid-state drives). Apacer Technology has overcome SATA III technology barriers and developed the ultra-performance Combo SATA Drive (CSD), and Corepower technology protects data in cache from impact of power disruption. Their water- and dust-proof capabilities are improved by special coating and molding technologies. Apacer also provides industrial- and military-class protection/erase methods and cloud computing-based monitoring software to enhance data protection and remote maintenance capability.
Addressing the embedded market's demand for high-performance, energy-saving and connected systems, Microchip has developed solutions basing on the MIPS32 microAptiv core architecture, offering support for high computing power per megahertz, large memory capacity and a wide variety of peripherals. The integrated development framework that combines versatile in-house or third-party drivers, libraries, real-time operating systems and middleware components substantially shortens the time for development and verification of 32bit MCU program codes.
Unlike those of ordinary PCs, industrial PCs' functions and features vary depending on the operating environments and requirements, such as for high performance, 24/7 operation , wide-range working temperatures or voltages, dust-proof and noiselessness. A specialist in industrial computing devices, Advantech offers various ARK models of high-performance, low-power-consuming, fanless, industrial Box PCs and extensible Box PCs whose performance is comparable to desktop PCs. These extensible models can be mounted on walls or the backs of display screens, and are designed to meet the various environmental requirements for industrial, commercial and IoT needs.
With the fast expanding reach of the Internet and the approaching of the era of cloud computing, the HTML5 open platform enables quick development of cross-platform applications, easing concerns that there may be different user experience on different connected devices. Mozilla, known for its Firefox web browser, is also eyeing the mobile operation system (OS) market. It has launched Firefox OS, which is based on HTML5 and Open Web resources. It is a truly open source platform that frees software and hardware designers from the restrictions that would otherwise be imposed on them by closed and semi-closed platforms.
The prospects of smart applications, which are needed to serve the purposes of cloud-based networks of sensing devices, IoT (Internet of Things) and terminal devices, have triggered strong interests in Big Data and inspired imaginations of next-generation cognitive computing and artificial intelligence. The Foxconn Group has teamed up with US-based Mozilla to build cross-platform smart applications using HTML5 Web-based Firefox OS. The smart applications allow clients to build highly optimized devices integrating support for eight screens, the Internet and the cloud.