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By Rich Handley

NXP, Canonical to Demo IoT Gateways at Embedded World

NXP Semiconductors and Canonical have collaborated to port Ubuntu Core to the LS1043A, a quad-core system-on-chip targeted at Internet of Things gateways and networking equipment. With this combination, device manufacturers gain a platform with which to build high-throughput IoT gateways.

Ubuntu Core has been used in a variety of devices from IoT gateways to network equipment. IoT gateways benefit from the wide support of IoT protocol available on Ubuntu, and let developers utilize the edge-computing capabilities offered by the LS1043A to run advanced analytics and artificial-intelligence models. Embedded networking products can run standard Linux applications such as Quagga or Sonic. Ubuntu Core thus makes full use of the LS1043A's network and IO features, such as packet acceleration, to simultaneously support high bandwidth traffic to smart devices over 802.11ac, as well as IoT data collection via Bluetooth LE, Thread, ZigBee or other low-power wireless standards.

Ubuntu Core allows device manufacturers to use the Snaps cross-platform Linux packaging format to build applications. Snaps offers a number of features for device manufacturers throughout the software-management lifecycle, from development to deployment and from security to business models.

Snaps allows developers to create, package, test and distribute self-contained applications based on thousands of existing Ubuntu and Linux libraries. This means device manufacturers can reduce development time, the company explains. Snaps can also help with monetization, as the system can be deployed within a branded store.

"We are pleased to be working with Canonical to demonstrate the full IoT capabilities of Ubuntu Core on the NXP LS1043A," said Richard House, NXP's VP of software development and digital networking, in a prepared statement. "Ubuntu Core will provide our customers with a great tool to go from development to production on the scalable Layerscape family of SoCs."

The LS1043A is part of the QorIQ Layerscape family, which offers additional security via Trust Architecture. According to the company, this complements security features associated with Snaps, such as read-only images, authentication of application origin, confinement, isolation and transactional updates. As the Ubuntu Core image is built from the ground up using Snaps, the entire device stack can benefit from tools to continuously update the stack and roll-back in case of update failure, thereby ensuring the devices' security and integrity.

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