Freescale Offers New i.MX53 Multimedia Products and Development Solutions

Consumer and industrial devices broaden i.MX53 applications processor family; tablet reference design and low-cost Quick Start board help jump-start development

AUSTIN, Texas - (February 28, 2011) - Freescale Semiconductor is expanding its i.MX53 high-performance applications processor portfolio with two advanced development platforms and new consumer and industrial devices.

“Freescale’s newest i.MX53 products and development resources demonstrate our uncompromising commitment to deliver the technology and support our customers need to differentiate and win in highly competitive markets,” said Ken Obuszewski, product marketing director for Freescale’s Multimedia Applications Division. “Ease-of-use is a hallmark of Freescale’s i.MX products, and our latest i.MX53 development solutions and market-specific products underscore this distinction.”

With more than 100 million units shipped to date, Freescale’s applications processors are a top architectural choice for OEMs and systems designers requiring rich feature sets, high performance and best-in-class power efficiency. The company’s i.MX processor portfolio has been broadly adopted across a wide range of applications, including many of today’s fastest growing product categories.

Quick Start development platform

To help customers more quickly and easily create innovative products for a variety of markets, Freescale is offering a Quick Start development platform based on i.MX53 technology with a manufacturer’s suggested resale price of $149 (USD). Designed for an optimal out-of-box experience, the platform includes a 1GHz i.MX53 applications processor with 1 GB of DDR3 memory and an extensive set of peripherals. Also included are drivers, hardware, software-optimized multimedia codecs and other critical components. The Quick Start solution runs on an optimized Linux® OS distribution supported by a large and vibrant community of open source developers at

SABRE platform for tablets

Freescale is also introducing a new reference design in its Smart Application Blueprint for Rapid Engineering (SABRE) series. The SABRE platform for tablets, based on i.MX53 technology, offers market-specific connectivity and user interfaces to help speed system-level development of next-generation tablets and mobile devices. Engineered to help developers and manufacturers provide compelling user experiences on a near-production-ready device, the SABRE platform includes an i.MX53 applications processor built on a 1GHz ARM® Cortex™-A8 core capable of running the Android™, Linux and Microsoft Windows® Embedded Compact 7 operating systems. The reference design features a 10-inch, high-resolution LCD display and an array of market-critical features, functionality and technologies. The design also includes the Freescale MMA8451Q 3-axis accelerometer, MAG3112 magnetic sensor, MC1323x transceiver and SGTL5000 audio codec.

New i.MX537 and i.MX538 devices

Freescale is expanding the i.MX53 product family with the i.MX537 derivative for industrial applications and the i.MX538 derivative for consumer applications. Based on Freescale’s latest implementation of the advanced ARM Cortex-A8 core, these new processors deliver ultra-fast processing for applications including tablets, smartphones, automotive infotainment systems, patient monitoring equipment and industrial devices with human-machine interfaces. The products’ low power consumption qualifies them for the Freescale Energy-Efficient Solutions mark, which designates Freescale products whose implementation of energy or power management technologies and/or performance within a specified energy budget over the life of the application is truly optimal and/or best in class. Merging outstanding performance with 1080p HD video, high-end 2D/3D graphics hardware acceleration and industry-leading input/output flexibility on a single system-on-a-chip (SoC), the newest i.MX53 products are expected to be deployed across a broad range of industries.

The i.MX537 processor incorporates an 800 MHz ARM Cortex-A8 core and provides key environmental differentiators for the industrial market. These include 3.3V I/O support, a 0.8 mm pitch package to reduce PCB and manufacturing costs, extended temperature coverage of -40 C to +85 C for harsh environments, industrial qualification for extended reliability, and a strong ecosystem of module manufacturers, software integrators and development tools providers. In addition, the i.MX537 device is part of the Freescale Product Longevity program, with a minimum of 15 years of assured supply. For details, please visit

Freescale’s new i.MX538 processor for consumer markets is delivered in 12mm x 12mm package-on–package (PoP) housing, built on a 1 GHz ARM Cortex-A8 core and supports LPDDR2 with optional MMC/SD flash memories. The processor’s PoP technology allows vertical layering of logic and memory ball grid array packages, resulting in a small footprint ideal for consumer applications.

Availability and pricing

The Quick Start board is available now for a manufacturer’s suggested resale price of $149 (USD). The SABRE platform for tablets is expected to be offered in March 2011 at a manufacturer’s suggested resale price of $1,499 (USD). The i.MX537 and i.MX538 applications processors are available now in sample quantities for select customers, with general sampling anticipated in June 2011.

Device pricing and additional information about products and development solutions are available from Freescale sales representatives. For more information,

About Freescale Semiconductor

Freescale Semiconductor is a global leader in the design and manufacture of embedded semiconductors for the automotive, consumer, industrial and networking markets. The privately held company is based in Austin, Texas, and has design, research and development, manufacturing and sales operations around the world.

Supporting partner quotes follow


“Adeneo Embedded is very excited about the launch of the i.MX53 Quick Start board targeting the General Embedded market, combining a powerful ARM Cortex-A8 based processor with a very attractive price,” said Yannick Chammings, chief executive officer of Adeneo. “As the editor of the Android and Windows Embedded Compact 7 reference BSPs for this development board, Adeneo Embedded has furthered our collaboration with Freescale to support worldwide customers with the development of advanced embedded devices based on the i.MX53 processor and Windows Embedded Compact, Android or Linux technologies.”

ARM Limited

“ARM is committed to providing our partners with the tools required to easily and rapidly develop optimized ARM processor-based products,” said John Cornish, executive vice president and general manager, System Design Division, ARM. “The ARM Development Studio 5 (DS-5) represents a significant addition to our tools portfolio and has been specifically designed for developers wishing to create Linux and Android products based on devices such as the Freescale i.MX53.”

Boundary Devices

“Freescale hit the ball out of the park with the i.MX53. Added integration of LVDS, serial ATA and a USB PHY save board real estate and cost for industrial and mobile applications,” said Pejman Kalkhoran, chief financial officer of Boundary Devices. “The additional performance of a 1GHz CPU clock, 400MHz DDR and up to 2GB of RAM enable even the most demanding 1080P video applications. Boundary Devices is happy to announce the Nitrogen53 platform, a high performance, highly integrated addition to its i.MX family of Power Over Ethernet (PoE)-enabled solutions for gaming, signage and alternative energy markets.”


“The iMX53 platform’s powerful multimedia capabilities such as HD video are ideal to enable quality playback of video content from popular websites,” said Anand Joshi vice president of the Digital Home Technology business unit for Calsoft. “2D/3D graphics acceleration will further enhance the user experience of the industry’s top multimedia player technologies.”

D2 Technologies

“Today's consumers are demanding richer multimedia communication capabilities like video calling and high definition voice, yet the form factor needs to remain small and power efficient,” said Doug Makishima, chief operating officer for D2 Technologies. “Freescale's i.MX53 processor family, together with D2 Technologies' mCUE software for voice and video communication on the Android OS, gives OEMs and ODMs a quicker way to send consumer devices to market that deliver speed, performance and a rewarding user experience, all with one of the industry's lowest rates of power consumption. Freescale's innovative i.MX53, paired with D2's industry-leading embedded IP communications capabilities, gives developers the freedom to easily create interoperable and flexible consumer products ranging from tablets to in-dash automotive navigation devices at economical price points.”

Device Solutions

“Device Solutions is delighted to extend our range of Freescale i.MX-based products and announce the Opal i.MX53 CPU module,” said Martin Welford, chief executive officer of Device Solutions. “Our industrial, automotive and medical customers will be able to create new experiences for their users with the speed and multimedia capabilities provided by the Freescale i.MX53. The Opal CPU module allows them to bring new devices to market quickly, as we have taken care of the complex hardware design and OS porting processes.”

Digi International

“We have a long relationship with Freescale and are pleased to extend our i.MX Systems-on-Module product family based on the new i.MX53 processor,” said Larry Kraft, senior vice president of global sales and marketing, Digi International. “Our new Solutions-on-Module with iDigi cloud computing service, full software development resources and custom design support from Spectrum Design Solutions allow customers to get to market quickly with network connected devices.”

IAR Systems

“The i.MX53 family in combination with IAR Embedded Workbench will be very attractive for companies demanding high performance and low power in their design of automotive, consumer and industrial multimedia applications,” said Fredrik Medin, marketing director, IAR Systems. “Our C/C++ development tools greatly enhance the capabilities of the i.MX53 family by adding software performance and providing our unique power debugging technology, which allows software developers to take command of the system’s power consumption.”

Intrinsyc Software International

“Intrinsyc is excited about the opportunity to continue our close collaboration with Freescale on the SABRE reference design for tablets based on i.MX53. The transition from our current activity and offerings on the i.MX51 and i.MX53 hardware development platforms to the SABRE reference design for tablets will be a smooth one and we are looking forward to addressing our tablet customer’s needs with the advanced multimedia capabilities on the new platform,” said Alkarim Kassam, vice president of Engineering for Intrinsyc. “Intrinsyc will also expand modem support for RapidRIL on the SABRE platform and provide further software enhancements to our very successful Remote Device Updater technology for OEMs requiring a comprehensive device update strategy.”


“The latest TX53 Ka-Ro Computer on Module, based on the i.MX53 processor, is ideal for applications such as security, surveillance, digital signage, Point of Sales and Training on the Job tasks along with automotive and test systems,” said Ekkehard Meurers, chief financial officer of Ka-Ro electronics. “Systems requiring a great deal of computing power including high-end warning systems and demanding a significant amount of visualization can be fulfilled with the TX53 new Starter kit V development system. The close collaboration with Freescale made the nearly synchronous launch of the TX53 possible and thus better positions Ka-Ro to provide a cost-saving solution to end customers.”


“Lauterbach’s support of the i.MX53 and i.MX53x family with the TRACE32 PowerTools allows our mutual customers to reuse their existing debuggers and explore the capabilities of the new Freescale platform,” said Norbert Weiss, sales and marketing manager at Lauterbach GmbH. “The long-standing and close cooperation between Lauterbach and Freescale enables timely access to development tools for the latest Freescale processor families.”


“Linaro is excited to be enabling the i.MX53 Quick Start board to use the latest and best open source code and tools,” said Stephen Doel, chief operating officer of Linaro. “We are working on delivering Linaro Evaluation Builds for Android 2.3 and 3.0 as well as Ubuntu 11.04 for this board that will help accelerate product development and device innovation.”


“Macraigor Systems is continuing our support of the i.MX family of processors from Freescale by offering many of our low-cost solutions for the new i.MX53x,” said Craig Haller, chief engineer for Macraigor Systems. “From our board 'bring up' tools to our debuggers, including the GNU Toolset and Eclipse with examples, the Flash Programmer and more, we have a complete line of cost-effective solutions to enhance the development process with the exciting new i.MX53 processors.”

Mentor Graphics

“Mentor Embedded comprehensive tools, support and services greatly speed time to market for professional C and C++ developers targeting Freescale's new i.MX53 devices,” said Mark Mitchell, director of Embedded Tools, Mentor Graphics Embedded Software Division. “Our Sourcery tools and probes, based on open-source standards such as Eclipse and the GNU toolchain, make it easy for developers to get up and running in minutes.”

“The award winning Inflexion UI platform from Mentor Graphics is bundled with the Freescale i.MX53 application processors to enable advanced differentiated and dynamic 2D, 3D and animated user interfaces for Android and Linux based devices,” said Phillip Burr, director of UI Product Marketing, Mentor Graphics Embedded Software Division. “Mutual customers will now be able to develop customized UIs for a broad range of products including tablets, medical devices, in-car infotainment systems and home devices and get the best out of the powerful multimedia capability of the i.MX53 application processors with ease and confidence.”


“The Freescale i.MX53x takes the high-performing i.MX51 family to the next level. NovTech has had successful designs with the i.MX51x and now with the introduction of the i.MX53x, NovTech can enhance the solutions offered with a larger amount of DDR supported, higher display resolution, stronger video engine, and additional on-board peripherals such as SATA and USB HOST (built-in PHY) to name some,” said Yossi Har-Nov, principal at NovTech. “NovTech is introducing a new member of the NOVPEK (Platform Evaluation Kit) family, the NOVPEK_i.MX53, which provides systems architects, board designers and test/debug engineers with a great tool to expedite and enhance their work.”

SEGGER Microcontroller

“We believe that the i.MX53 device from Freescale will become a very successful device in the market of modern multimedia microprocessors,” said Rolf Segger, chief technology officer of SEGGER Microcontroller. “The combination with our market-leading J-Link is the perfect solution to debug and program the i.MX53 device fast and reliably.”


“We are delighted to work with Freescale to enable next-generation tablets and displays to be connected to the personal cloud,” said Mark Lee, chief executive officer of Splashtop Inc. “Splashtop Remote delivers rich content and applications from remote PCs and Macs to any i.MX53 powered device.”