ULP-COM specification wins Electron d'or Award

26 July 2012

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Kontron reports that its new ultra-low-power ULP-COM specification for ARM- and SoC-based Computer-on-Modules has received the Electron d'Or 2012 Award, presented by the French ElectroniqueS Magazine. The new module specification with the working title ULP-COM was voted the most important innovation of the last twelve months in the sub-system category.

Kontron's new module specification for ultra-low-power embedded systems extends the COM usage model to ARM and SoC architectures with scalable, modular and out-of-the-box solutions. The new ULP-COM specification allows for custom-specific designs based on a proven and scalable module platform and is claimed to save customers significant development time and costs. Furthermore, the ULP-COM specification will be hosted by the Standardization Group for Embedded Technologies (SGET) to guarantee the further development of this vendor-independent specification. Customers will benefit from the highest design security and longevity of their ARM- and SoC-based applications.

Norbert Hauser, Executive Vice President Marketing at Kontron, comments: "Kontron is honoured to have received this prestigious award. We see this as an appreciation of our commitment within our strategic diversification into the ultra-low power / ARM technology and our endeavour to establish common standards in the predominantly proprietary ARM market. We have been very successful in our collaboration with embedded form factor standardisation and particularly with ETX and COM Express standards. Now we are mirroring this success story in the ultra-low power / ARM market segment, which complements that of the x86 technology. Compared to the current ARM and SoC approach, which is characterised by the sole availability of full custom designs, customers now benefit from the massively reduced R&D investment costs and reduced time-to-market, by utilizing application-ready platform solutions based on ULP-COM."

The ULP-COM specification at a glance

The new ULP-COM specification for ultra-low-power COMs was developed specifically for new modules with ARM and SoC processors and is characterised by the extremely flat build of its form factor. It uses a 314-pin connector that has a construction height of just 4.3mm (the MXM 3.0) with an optimised ARM/SoC pin-out definition. This connection method suits robust and cost-effective designs that have an extremely thin construction height. Furthermore, the specification integrates dedicated interfaces for the latest ARM and SOC processors. This means that not only LVDS, 24-bit RGB and HDMI are supported, but embedded DisplayPort for future designs is supported as well. As another claimed first for the industry, dedicated camera interfaces are being incorporated into the specification. OEMs benefit from minimised design effort and bill-of-material costs. Two different module sizes are specified in order to offer a high level of flexibility regarding different mechanical requirements: a short module measuring 82mm x 50mm and a full-size module measuring 82mm x 80mm. Additionally, ULP-COM will cover all other known requirements analogue to other module standards, so that the 1.0 release version is already completely mature for the market.

For further news on Kontron's strategic entry into ARM architecture, go to

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