Sony, Toshiba to form Cell processor JV

Sony, Sony Computer Entertainment and Toshiba will form a joint venture that will take over manufacturing of the Cell processor.

Sony, Sony Computer Entertainment and Toshiba have decided to pool their resources into a joint venture that will take over manufacturing of the Cell processor and possibly other high-performance chips, they said this week.

Although they are still negotiating details of the venture, they expect it to begin operations on April 1 next year. Toshiba will own 60 percent of the shares with the remainder split between the two Sony companies. The three companies and IBM previously collaborated on development of the Cell chip, used in the PlayStation 3 games console, and chip's companion RSX graphics processor.

Sony also said it will sell its 300-millimeter chip production line in Nagasaki, Japan, to Toshiba. The production line is currently used to produce the Cell chip and after the sale will continue to do so under the control of the new joint venture.

The line currently produces the Cell using a 65-nanometer process technology but under Toshiba's ownership will be transitioned to a more advanced 45-nm process. The step up in production technology means the Cell will be physically smaller and consume less power. It should also bring down the production cost of each chip.

Sony is trying to reduce hardware costs of components used in the PlayStation 3 so the deal should further that aim. It could also hasten the adoption of the Cell processor in other products. Toshiba and Sony have a long-stated aim of embedding the chip in consumer electronics products.

At this month's Ceatec exhibition in Japan Toshiba showed off a new processor based on the Cell. The SpursEngine multimedia coprocessor is based on the Cell Broadband Engine processor core and was demonstrated embedded inside a laptop PC assisting the main processor in carrying out some heavy-duty graphics processing.

Sony has also agreed to transfer its assets in another joint venture, Oita TS Semiconductor, to Toshiba when the current deal expires in March 2008. The venture was established in 1999 to produce chips for the PlayStation 2 console.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?