ARM unveiled the first phase of the new AMBA 4 specification. The AMBA specification is the de facto standard for system on-chip interconnects. The AMBA 4 increases functionality and efficiency for complex, media-rich on-chip communication. The AMBA 4 specification has been designed by and for the industry with contributions from 35 of the industry’s leading OEM, semiconductor, and EDA vendors.
Phase one of the AMBA 4 specification includes definition of an expanded family of AXI interconnect protocols including AXI4, AXI4-Lite and AXI4-Stream. The AXI4 protocol adds support for longer bursts and Quality of Service (QoS) signaling, and is a natural extension of the AMBA 3 specification. Long burst support aids integration of devices with large block transfers, while QoS signaling provides the ability to manage latency and bandwidth in complex multi-master systems.
The new AMBA 4 specification and the AXI4 protocols have also been extended to meet the needs of FPGA implementations. AXI4-Lite is a subset of the full AXI4 specification for simple control register interfaces, reducing SoC wiring congestion and simplifying implementation, while the AXI4-Stream protocol provides an efficient streaming interface for non-address-based, point-to-point communication, such as video and audio data.
Early adopters of these new specifications include Arteris, Cadence, Mentor, Sonics, Synopsys and Xilinx.
More info: AMBA 4 Open Specifications