The new Server Alliance: Qualcomm, Mellanox and Xilinx

12 October, 2015

ARM-based server processor from Qualcomm, Ethernet and InfiniBand interconnect solutions from Mellanox and Xilinx's offload technology will challenge Intel's dominance in the storage and servers market

ARM-based server processor from Qualcomm, Ethernet and InfiniBand interconnect solutions from Mellanox and Xilinx’s offload technology will challenge Intel’s dominance in the storage and servers market


On Thursday, Qualcomm Technologies announced early specs for a new ARM-based data center system on a chip (SoC), expanding beyond mobile chips into server processors for the first time. It’s one of the most advanced server processors, and the company hopes it will be a low power alternative to Intel x86 architecture.

During the last 2 years Qualcomm have secretly developed a server processor based on the ARMv8-A instruction set. This new 24 cores 64 bits processor is planned to be a major rival for Intel processors in ultra large data centers, like those of Facebook, Google and Amazon. During the announcement, Qualcomm also introduced  2 surprising partner in its new initiative: Mellanox Technologies from Israel and Xilinx from the US.

Qualcomm and Mellanox announced a multi-phase technology collaboration that brings Qualcomm’s server technology closer to commercialization. As part of the collaboration, Mellanox will offer Ethernet and InfiniBand interconnect solutions that, in conjunction with Qualcomm’s CPUs, will be optimized for scalable server and storage infrastructures.

Mellanox enjoys a leading position in the 10, 25, 40, 50, and 100 Gigabit per-second Ethernet and InfiniBand interconnect technology/ It provides solutions for the most efficient hyperscale deployments including Web 2.0, cloud, big data, database and storage applications. “We are pleased to work with Qualcomm, as they extend their proven execution and technology leadership in the embedded space, to the server market,” said Eyal Waldman, president and chief executive officer, Mellanox Technologies.

“Qualcomm Technologies’ advanced server technology combined with our industry leading interconnect solutions, creates a world-class platform for next-generation server and storage systems.” Anand Chandrasekher, senior vice president, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “Working with Mellanox to combine its extremely high performance interconnect solutions with our leading-edge CPU ensures that we, and our customers, are able to address the most demanding datacenter needs.”

Xilinx role in the new alliance will be to provide its programmable technology (FPGA devices) to offload certain tasks from the main CPU, and help it to boost its overall performance.

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