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Embedded developers make OS choices

Posted: 17 Nov 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Embedded Market Study? software? RTOS?

The OS requires too much processing power. (Click to view full image)

As you might expect for a survey of embedded developers, there were questions pertaining to OS. One was "If your current embedded project doesn't use an OS, RTOS, kernel, software executive or scheduler of any kind, why not?" The top answermy project didn't require itdidn't come as a surprise, and it pretty much remained the same from previous studies. But the response I found interesting was "the OS requires too much processing power." This number is down from last year. That's a good thing, as it shows that users are taking advantage of increased processor performance.

The use of commercial OS reveals an interesting trend. The four-year trend of commercial OS that developers plan to use is going down. There's also a significant drop in the use of non-commercial OS. That should certainly raise a red flag with the commercial OS vendors. Other OS questions looked into why those who employ a commercial OS do so and the factors in selecting one.

Overall cost as a reason for using a commercial OS declined from 2005-2007. (Click to view full image)

Beyond OS, the survey found that when it comes to choosing a microprocessor the hardware team has the most influence, but the software staff also gets their two cents in. Oddly enough, teams that make a group decision are in decline by about 10 percent. It also appears that software developers have more say in the hardware than hardware developers do in the software.

Finally, it looks as if a response I was surprised by last year was not a fluke there's no loyalty toward analog vendors. The number of developers who will use whatever brand meets their requirements rose from 37 percent to 39 percent. And the number that will always use the same trusted brand fell from 12 percent to 10 percent.

Real-time performance is the most important factor in choosing an OS. (Click to view full image)

- Richard Nass
EE Times

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