Qualcomm's server chips have been difficult for developers to get their hands on as they have only been made available to top-tier cloud players. However, despite that policy being unlikely to change anytime soon, there is now a way for developers to work with them using a new cloud service.
Linaro, has launched a cloud service aimed at ARM developers. This consortium of companies are developing hardware and software for ARM-based devices, and they are making available the service for developers looking to write and test server applications.
Developers’ that use the service will have remote access to bare-metal ARM servers -- including systems with Qualcomm's upcoming 24-core server chip. The cloud service will also feature ARM-based server chips from AMD, Cavium and Huawei and is intended to be a cheap and an easy way for developers to test a wide range of ARM 64-bit server hardware platforms.
Qualcomm entered the ARM server market in October,2015 which was a long time after its competitors who have shipped 64-bit server processors as early as 2013. To date, Qualcomm has only supplied test versions of its server chips to unspecified top-tier cloud players, and has stated consistently it would only enter the market when it was viable.
The interest in Qualcomm entering the ARM server market is that currently Intel dominates the server market but Qualcomm are seen as being big enough to potentially shift the balance of power from Intel to ARM server chips as they are viewed to have significant power-efficiency features.
George Grey, CEO of Linaro, said during a speech at the Linaro Connect conference in Bangkok this week, that the Linaro's cloud service will be available through servers deployed in Cambridge, U.K., and Austin, Texas. It will be launched in China in the second or third quarter.
Image source: Flickr / Kārlis Dambrāns