VIA Announces Comprehensive Support for Microsoft Robotics Studio

VIA EPIA mainboards are the platform of choice for robotics developers looking for compact, off-the-shelf mainboards with extensive feature sets and ultra low power draw

Taipei, Taiwan, 13 December 2006 — VIA Technologies, Inc., a leading innovator and developer of silicon chip technologies and PC platform solutions, today announced full support for Microsoft Robotics Studio, a new Windows-based environment that simplifies the creation of robotics applications, across all VIA processor platforms and the acclaimed range of ultra compact VIA EPIA mainboards. Whether for academic, hobbyist or commercial robots, the flexible VIA EPIA mainboards powering Microsoft Robotics Studio makes development easier for robotics designers.

Renowned for their compact form factor, robust performance, extensive feature sets and extremely low power consumption of as little as 9.3 watts in idle mode for the VIA Eden™-based EPIA CN10000E, VIA EPIA mainboards have served as central control platforms for a wide range of robotics systems, from autonomous vehicles with military or healthcare applications to digital household companions. Providing the convenience of an off-the shelf platform and packed with all the computing and digital media performance and connectivity required, VIA EPIA mainboards have become the platform of choice for robotics developers.

“We are impressed by the popularity of VIA EPIA mainboards widely used in robotics development and applications around the world today,” said Tandy Trower, general manager of the Microsoft Robotics Group at Microsoft Corp.  “The most notable criteria for mobile robots are size and battery-life constraints, and VIA provides just the right platforms under a Windows-based environment for more sophisticated robots.”

“As the sphere of robotics development broadens beyond traditional horizons, the demands for greater performance, shorter development time and an easier hands-on experience are being met by innovations from Microsoft and VIA,” said Daniel Wu, Assistant Vice President, VIA Platform Solutions Division, VIA Technologies, Inc. “Microsoft Robotics Studio meets these challenges with a simpler and more flexible development platform that matches well with our power efficient, richly integrated mainboards in the field of robotics innovation.”

VIA EPIA mainboards integrate the latest silicon technologies onto the world’s smallest and lowest profile standard retail boards. Designed as platforms for innovation in x86 system design, the VIA EPIA family of mainboards is available in a growing number of configurations and feature sets from VIA channel partners worldwide.  VIA EPIA mainboards are fully compatible with complete range of x86 software applications.

The Microsoft Robotics Studio environment is an end-to-end, scalable and extensible robotics development platform that supports a wide variety of hardware.  The development environment supports a wide range of programming languages, and includes a new visual programming language, which enables non-programmers to create and debug robotics programs very easily. Microsoft Robotics Studio includes a powerful physics-based simulation environment that lets developers simulate robotics applications in realistic 3D physics-based virtual environments. The lightweight services-oriented runtime supports the execution of concurrent and distributed robotic applications.

About VIA Technologies, Inc.

VIA Technologies, Inc. (TSE 2388) is the foremost fabless supplier of market-leading core logic chipsets, low power x86 processors, advanced connectivity, multimedia, networking and storage silicon, and complete platform solutions that are driving system innovation in the PC and embedded markets. Headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, VIA’s global network links the high tech centers of the US, Europe and Asia, and its customer base includes the world’s top OEMs, motherboard vendors and system integrators.

VIA Technologies, Inc.