The Linley Group, a prestigious semiconductor analyst firm, has named the Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) its Best Processor Technology in its prestigious annual Analysts' Choice awards.

The HSA Foundation, which includes AMD, ARM, Imagination, Mediatek, Qualcomm, Samsung, Texas Instruments and others, has been driving the development of the HSA specification, an organisation that sets the standard for HSA-featured parts. The Linley Group's recognition of HSA as a key processor technology coupled to the HSA Foundation's roster of top-tier semiconductor vendors and software houses highlights the wide industry acceptance that HSA will be a key technology for the semiconductor industry.

It is not a surprise that the Linley Group gave HSA its Best Processor Technology award after considering the technologies that make up HSA. With Heterogeneous Unified Memory Access (hUMA), the HSA Runtime Infrastructure and the ability for processors to allocate tasks to the core that is most appropriate for the workload without developer or user interaction, HSA finally delivers on the promise of heterogeneous compute.

AMD isn't the only semiconductor vendor to see the value in HSA. The HSA Foundation has a number of top-tier hardware vendors including ARM, Imagination, LG, MediaTek, Qualcomm, Samsung and Texas Instruments along with a slew of software houses, including Canonical and Oracle.

HSA has such a wide industry following because it breaks down the walled gardens of compute, with a single processor having multiple compute engines that accelerate particular workloads. Traditionally, developers had to target which compute engine they wanted their code to run, however HSA removes this allowing the developer to focus on creating compelling user experiences.

The work done by the HSA Foundation is being realised in silicon. In January, AMD released the “Kaveri” Accelerated Processing Unit  for desktop (APU), the industry’s first processor to have HSA features. AMD's “Kaveri” APU is a watershed product for the semiconductor industry, combining AMD's “Steamroller” architecture coupled to a GPU based on the latest AMD GCN architecture along with HSA features such as hUMA.

AMD is proud that its work as part of the HSA Foundation has helped HSA receive this prestigious award from a highly respected independent semiconductor expert.


Lawrence Latif is a Manager of Technical Communications at AMD. His postings are his own opinions and may not represent AMD’s positions, strategies or opinions. Links to third party sites, and references to third party trademarks, are provided for convenience and illustrative purposes only. Unless explicitly stated, AMD is not responsible for the contents of such links, and no third party endorsement of AMD or any of its products is implied.