Embedded chip designer Arm has announced the 10 billionth processor shipped by its partners.
The company developed its first embeddable Risc core, the ARM6, in 1991, and its semiconductor partners currently ship almost three billion Arm-powered processors every year.
"Arm's partners have now shipped more than one processor for every single person on the planet," said Warren East, chief executive at Arm.
"Ten billion Arm processors in use is an enormous milestone, and demonstrates the growth in adoption of the Arm architecture by the vast majority of major electronics companies across the broadest range of applications."
Since its launch, Arm has grown to become the largest microprocessor intellectual property company in the world, and its portfolio now covers every area of microprocessor applications.
Arm processors can be found in almost every type of electronic product including phones, media players, digital cameras, HD TVs, hard drives, peripherals and even automotive braking systems.
Analysts have praised the achievement, and predict that the company will go from strength to strength.
"Arm deserves congratulations for successfully executing the business model of licensing microprocessor technology as intellectual property," said Tom Halfhill, a senior analyst at In-Stat.
"Although Arm does not actually make or sell microprocessor chips, there are now 10 billion Arm microprocessors in the world, all implemented in silicon by Arm partners.
"Arm was an early pioneer of this revolutionary business model, and it has given it a long reach in the digital world."
Jordan Selburn, principal analyst for semiconductor design services at iSuppli, added: "Billions of ASSPs and ASICs built around Risc processor cores are shipping each year and we forecast that this number will approach five billion a year by 2011."
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