ARM has unveiled a new 64-bit hardware development platform called Juno, one which aims to provide with a solid, stable and most importantly, vendor-neutral, platform.

The launch coincided with another announcement by Linaro that a port of the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) would be available for the ARMv8-A architecture as part of v14.06 of Linaro.

The development platform uses a system-on-chip with six cores (4 Cortex-A53 and 2 Cortex-A57 in a big.LITTLE processor configuration) plus quad-core ARM Mali T624 GPU, all glued together by a CCI-400 bus.

The board supports OpenGL-ES 30, up to 8GB of RAM, USB 2.0 and will of course support Android L developer preview, which will be available in 64-bit flavour.

Another interesting feature it offers is an optional LogicTile Express FPGA board which provides developers with some leeway for customisation.

Reference platforms are not new; Nvidia, Qualcomm, Samsung and many other ARM SoC manufacturers produce and sell their own.

However, they tend to be expensive and offer a bewildering array of options (e.g. IO ports or GPU options).

ARM's Juno sticks to a more mundane and conservative agenda making it easier for developers; the flip side is that it is likely to spawn a number of copycat products with very similar specifications.