The first laptop based on RISC-V silicon is now available to pre-order online. A collaboration between DeepComputing and Xcalibyte, the new ROMA laptop is powered by a quad-core RISC-V processor and GPU, Arm security enclave, up to 16GB LPDDR4/X RAM, and up to 256GB internal storage.
ROMA, which supports most Linux distributions, is designed for developers building software for use on RISC-V chips. “The native RISC-V compilation is a major milestone,” said Mark Himelstein, CTO at RISC-V International, the organization responsible for promoting the instruction set architecture
It will be beneficial to developers who want to test their software on RISC-V natively. This platform should make it easy to transfer code to embedded systems.'
The RISC-V ISA is a free, open-source ISA based on the same design principles as Arm's proprietary cores, which command royalties when integrated into chips.
In the present day, RISC-V-based processors are far less common than either Arm- or x86-based chips, but the movement seems to be gaining momentum.
As an example, China is now heavily embracing RISC-V to minimize its reliance on western semiconductor companies. Additionally, Intel is dabbling in the space, presumably concluding that it cannot compete with x86 for power efficiency in the long run.
RISC-V International has not lost sight of the recent success of Arm-based processors, such as Apple's M-series. In the past few years, RISC-V has been found exclusively in dev kits, embedded technology, etc., but now it appears the leap to fully-featured client devices is just around the corner.
“ROMA is demonstrating the power of collaborative culture and the potential of the RISC-V ecosystem,” said Calista Redmond, CEO of RISC-V International.
This design bridges the gap between development boards and RISC-V-based business laptops used daily. Having achieved this important milestone would not have been possible without the contributions of the entire development team.'
A commemorative NFT will also be included with the first 100 models sold. You can do with that what you want. ROMA laptops are expected to start shipping in September, but pricing has not yet been confirmed
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