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Rambus Blog Post: No Need To Reinvent The Wheel: How Easy It Is To Build With RISC-V

By September 10, 2018May 12th, 2021No Comments

RISC-V, an Open Instruction Set Architecture (ISA) designed with small, fast, and low-power real-world implementations in mind, has many advantages for OEMs. Alongside affordability, OEMs do not need to worry locking into a closed ecosystem.
A decision on processing architecture is of huge importance and carries a significant cost. Once an OEM commits to a particular processor type (such as ARM, Qualcomm, or Intel) they commit considerable design resources, which often includes teams and teams of highly paid, talented engineers. As the processors are not interchangeable, work done on one architecture is not entirely transferrable to others.
One advantage of RISC-V is that this single software ecosystem, built on the RISC-V standard, supports multiple processor vendors. This means that processor vendors must now compete on the merit of their individual products for different applications. Moreover, without the need for each new processor manufacturer to build an expensive ecosystem from the ground up, there is the possibilities for new innovations in the processing industry.
The single software ecosystem built on the RISC-V standard allows for OEMs to bypass having to lock into a specific processer ecosystem. When an OEM chooses a particular processor type, it not only has to pay for that particular processor, but it has to continue to purchase from whichever company it purchased it processor from, leading to a market where profits are not driven by competition, but by how many customers locked-into an ecosystem are gathered. Also, the fact that the RISC-V standard supports different processor vendors means that OEMs can give the architecture a try without much risk, thereby leading to more productive competition between processor companies.
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