March 1, 2014 By: Will Verduzco
The mobile SoC world is growing increasingly furtive. While to a certain degree this is to be expected, efforts to keep an company’s IP private often come at the cost of widespread aftermarket development support and true device freedom. However, there are some SoC manufacturers that walk a different line.
You may recall that about a year ago, Broadcom released EGL drivers for the Samsung Galaxy Y. This was largely due to a team of developers, lead by XDA Forum Member arbylaw, that contacted Broadcom requesting proprietary GPU drivers for the Samsung Galaxy Y in order to build better custom ROMs for the device. Now, in honor of the Raspberry Pi’s 2nd birthday, Broadcom has stepped up their game by releasing the source code to its VideoCore IV GPU. While VideoCore may not exactly ring a bell, it is used in various products such as the BCM21553 SoC and the BCM2835 application processor used in the Pi.
Naturally, as soon as the source code was released, development teams immediately got to work to port this newly released code to existing devices. One of the first fruits of these efforts comes from XDA Senior Member bieltv.3, who ported Broadcom’s drivers to BCM21553 devices running ICS.
While there aren’t any end user-flashable files just yet, progress is being made now that developers have the tools that they need. Developers looking to get started should head over to Broadcom’s website to obtain the documentation and source code or read up on the source release on the Broadcom Blog and in Abhishek_Rawal‘s informational thread. And if you are developing for a BCM21553 device and want to build on bieltv.3′s work, head over to the BroadcomCM team thread.