Amazon deploys ARM-based Graviton processor

November 29, 2018 // By Peter Clarke
Amazon has announced it has now running its cloud services on ARM-based Graviton processors designed in-house claiming it can provide cost savings of up 45 percent for "scale-out" services.

The AWS Graviton processor is based on 64bit Neoverse cores, Amazon said without providing further detail of the hardware. ARM's Drew Henry senior vice president and general manager, Infrastructure Line of Business, said that Graviton is based on the Cosmos 16nm processor platform (see Reports: ARM discloses roadmap performance in Taiwan).

According to reports the Graviton is based on the Cortex-A72 64bit core operated at clock frequencies up to 2.3GHz. What is not clear is how many cores are included per physical chip.

The Cortex-A72 is a relatively mature design that would have typically been designed to target 16nm manufacturing processes. Servers based on Intel and AMD processors are expected to be faster in terms of performance but home-designed ARM SoCs may provide Amazon with a performance-per-dollar advantage quoted by Amazon. And there is the possibility of an using the Cortex-A76 in 10nm.

The Graviton design has come out of Israeli design house Annapurna Labs. Annapurna, founded in 2011, was acquired before it had produced any products, by Amazon in January 2015 for a sum reported to be in the range $350 million to $370 million. In 2016 it had its own line of ARM-based processors (see Amazon now sells its own ARM chips).

Next: ARM in data center


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