Intel acquires Wind River Systems

July 29, 2009

(by Linda Campbell)

On June 4, Intel announced its intention to acquire Wind River Systems (WRS) and on July 17, they announced the successful completion of the transaction. It was no surprise to anyone that WRS was up for sale; rumours have abounded for years about possible acquirers.  And in hindsight, the fact that Intel is their suitor can be rationalized as well, as inconvenient as it is for some in the industry.

This transaction represents a significant shift for the embedded industry as silicon vendors and OS providers redefine and realign their primary partnership strategies.  Phones have been ringing and emails flying as buz dev and alliance managers scramble to react, reaching out to their networks to gain insight, perspective and any relevant gossip.

In our case, some of the most surprised were our working level contacts at Intel, who were also reaching out trying to assuage some of the concern that their ECA software partners are expressing. And in talking to other silicon vendors, it seems that WRS alliance managers have been in the same boat. The mantra being, “This doesn’t change anything. We can still be friends. ” (Where have you heard this before? Oh right, it was high school, breaking up for the first time – you either used it or received it…)

Most of the rationalization I’ve heard has centred on speculation that the ECG organization at Intel is for the most part, innocent of direct involvement. This theory is based on one of two supporting notions: (1) that this is a play for the handset space and that it’s all about WRS’s expertise on Android and Linux or (2) that this is all about Intel’s corporate Linux strategy and keeping Microsoft at bay.

Initially I took some comfort in these rumours because they let me believe that a partner of more than a decade didn’t buy our largest competitor on purpose. “It was an accident”, I told myself. Now it’s almost eight weeks later and I’m over my initial shock  and looking at the situation more pragmatically. ECG’s level of involvement in the transaction is irrelevant. The reality is that Intel has spent a significant amount of cash on software that competes directly with our own. As rational business people, they will make the most of this investment.

So how does this shake out for the rest of us? Only time will tell. We’ll all have to wait and see whether Intel can maintain alliances with OS competitors and whether they can stomach investing (indirectly through a subsidiary) in competitive silicon support.  However, there are some of the obvious winners that arise directly from this transaction:

  • WRS shareholders, particularly anyone with lots of low cost options
  • Any customer who uses Vxworks on Intel silicon
  • Any customer who uses WRS’s Linux on Intel silicon
  • QNX and other vendors who offer alternative solutions for WRS customers who want to migrate away from a captive software supplier
  • Any OS company, realtime or Linux, who wants to establish a price for their company (2.5 times revenue is a great deal in these tough economic times)

At QNX, while we’re celebrating the removal of a competitor and the opportunity created, we are slightly concerned about the possible distraction of Intel as they work through their coopetition strategy. (Kind of like juggling multiple girlfriends with a wife.)  But the good news is that Intel says they still want to be friends.  🙂

With that, I leave you with a little Todd Rundgren… and a link to the official Intel press release.

http://www.intel.com/pressroom/archive/releases/20090717corp.htm?iid=pr1_releasepri_20099717r

http://www.intel.com/pressroom/archive/releases/20090604corp.htm

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Freescale i.mx35 PDK for Linux (and QNX)

July 15, 2009

Freescale’s PDK for the new i.mx35 is now available. The PDK comes packaged up with Linux support, hence the name. But it also comes with QNX support.  QNX offers a full BSP including an optimized graphics driver which leverages the onboard AMD z.160 Open VG core.  This makes it an ideal platform for running our Adobe Flash Lite based HMI framework.

House May 2009 new 077The i.mx35 is targeted at consumer, automotive and industrial applications.  The combination of the i.mx35 and the QNX HMI suite are a perfect solution for companies building everything from infotainment systems to home appliances to building automation and security systems to ticketing and POS kiosks to digital signage and even netbooks. 

To get the QNX BSP, visit Foundry 27, our developer portal at http://community.qnx.com/sf/wiki/do/viewPage/projects.bsp/wiki/FreescaleImx353ds

Now, if we could just get Freescale to change the name of the PDK, life would be perfect 🙂

imx35 002

(by Linda Campbell)


Digital Logic AG at ESEC

July 14, 2009

We would like to acknowledge Walter Furter and his team in Japan for showing QNX Fastboot for the Intel atom at ESEC in Japan.

Thanks Walter!

Cheers,

Kroy

Here is our local FAE Koichi Okasawa at their Booth:

QNX Fastboot for Intel Atom at Digital Logic Booth at ESEC Japan


QNX Support for Texas Instruments OMAP 3530

July 3, 2009

Today we published the first in a series of planned press releases for TI parts that QNX will be supporting.   The OMAP3530 is proving to be very popular across all the vertical market segments we serve, including Automotive, Industrial Automation, Medical and Networking/Consumer. This is one processor well suited to rich graphics, video and audio processing, with an ARM Cortex A-8 processor and TMS3200C64x+ DSP for offloading audio and video processing. This part also has an Imagination Core for 3D acceleration which we’ll be supporting later in Q3 2009.

Perhaps most important is the fact that we’ve optimized our most recent release of  the QNX CAR reference design on this platform so customers interested in QNX Aviage Multimedia, HMI Player and Accoustic Echo Cancellation can take advantage of the optimizations we’ve made on this platform. You can find out more about our support for the OMAP3530 here:

http://www.qnx.com/partners/partner_kits/ti_omap_3530.html

Keep your eyes open here in the next few weeks for a video of the work we’ve done and look for additional announcements regarding QNX support for TI parts in the fall.