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Marvell unveils Plug Computing initiative

by Scott Bicheno on 24 February 2009, 17:15

Tags: Marvell (NASDAQ:MRVL)

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$99 computer?

Fabless semiconductor company Marvell has announced what it's claiming is a "High-performance, low-power, exceptionally small computer for managing and storing digital media assets."

The Plug Computing initiative is a platform based around the SheevaPlug, the development kit for which can be purchased from Marvell for $99.

It consists of a Marvell Kirkwood processor based on an embedded 1.2GHz Sheeva CPU with 512 MB of flash and 512 MB of DRAM. As well as the plug there are also Ethernet and USB ports. Software wise, Marvell says "Multiple standard Linux 2.6 kernel distributions are supported."

While it's being positioned as a tiny computer, it's not immediately obvious what it offers over and above existing powerline networking technology. "There is no doubt that home networks need to become more intelligent and easier to use by offering value added services for the consumer," said Dr. Simon Milner, VP and GM of the Enterprise Business Unit at Marvell.

"We have created an open computing platform for developers in a consumer and eco-friendly form factor. Marvell's goal is to accelerate the development and availability of innovative software and services in the home."