Sophie Wilson and Steve B. Furber


Sponsored by the IEEE Ibuka Award Fund

“For the design of the 32-bit ARM RISC microprocessor.”

Over 250 billion ARM-powered chips have been manufactured to date and they are in virtually every mobile phone and tablet sold. None of it would be possible without the work of Steve Furber and Sophie Wilson, who designed the ARM 32-bit RISC microprocessor architecture. Their innovations, including creativity in the instruction set design and memory management, underpin the advantages that make ARM what it is today. Generations of RISC ARM architecture processors, starting with the original first-generation 32-bit ARM1 RISC processor, have excelled as high-performance and low-cost, low-power and low-heat generation processors. Companies with products using ARM’s architecture include Apple, Nvidia, Samsung, AMD, Broadcom, Fujitsu, Amazon, Huawei and Qualcomm. Processors running the ARM architecture operate consumer electronic devices from TVs to gaming consoles to network streamers to smartphones, as well as Internet of Things (IoT) devices and medical, industrial, and robotics applications. All of this success is based on the transformational contributions of Furber and Wilson.
An IEEE Fellow, Furber is Professor Emeritus of Computer Engineering, Department of Computer Science, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. Wilson is a Broadcom Research Fellow and Distinguished Engineer, Broadcom, Cambridge, UK.