Intel and Softbank Beware. Open Source Is Coming to the Chip Business

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After revolutionizing software, the open-source movement is threatening to do same to the chip industry. Big technology companies have begun dabbling with RISC-V, which replaces proprietary know-how in a key part of the chip design process with a free standard that anyone can use. While it’s early days, this could create a new crop of processors that compete with Intel Corp. products and whittle away at the licensing business of Arm Holdings Plc.

In December, about 2,000 people packed into a Silicon Valley conference to learn about RISC-V, a new set of instructions that control how software communicates with semiconductors.

[Source: Bloomberg]