AMD may be rumored to give Intel’s Atom architecture a run for its money in the netbook and mobile Internet device market, but they aren’t the only ones. Today ARM, provider of silicon for low-power consumption processors (which are found in smart phones and personal media players like the Archos 5), announced that it’s going full force into netbooks. The company is teaming up with Canonical to optimize the Ubuntu Desktop operating system for ARMv7 architecture, including ARM Cortex-A8 and Cortex-A9 processor-based systems. The company believes its play to power netbooks is a natural evolution of its position in the mobile device market since its architecture is highly efficient, optimized for Web browsing, and can handle high-quality video. The ARMv7 architecture is already tied into the Texas Instruments OMAP and Qualcom SnapDragon platforms. Read on for the full scoop. Kerry McGuire, director of strategic software alliances for ARM, gave us some more details on the company’s plans to roll into the netbook market. “Our platform can provide not only high performance but all-day battery life and advanced video functionality,” she said. In response to how it can compete with Intel’s Atom, McGuire said the ARM has the experience required in connected devices like smart phones, and the company will outshine its competitors’ ability to handle high-defintion video. “We can provide maximum power saving,” she stressed. McGuire also shared an interest from cell phone carriers in netbooks and that ARM has the experience working with carriers to bring its architecture mainstream. As for OEM partners, ARM didn’t share any plans, though the company is interested in netbooks of all sizes, including 8.9-inch and 10-inch systems. However, since the Ubuntu ARM distribution for desktops and netbooks will be officially available starting in April 2009, we don’t expect to see anything before then. When asked if the company was also interested in netbooks running a Microsoft OS, McGuire stated that ARM has a long history of working with Microsoft’s Windows CE and Windows Mobile. We are excited about the prospect of a netbook that can run all day on a charge–hopefully without a huge 6-cell battery hanging off the back or bottom–but only time will tell whether ARM’s entry will offer comparable performance to Atom.