Azul Systems has launched a 48-core processor, which will allow the company to build systems that feature 768 cores. Such systems are used in data centres to consolidate hundreds or thousands of virtual machines onto one system, as opposed to using dozens of separate servers, providing an effective consolidation platform. The Vega multi-core processor has jumped from 24 to 48, and is 64-bit. All its cores are cache-coherent, which means they're fully independent.

The Vega 2 doubles the number of cores, and the switch to a more advanced, 90-nanometre manufacturing process means the chips won't be significantly larger or consume much more power, Azul said. The first Vega used a 130-nanometre process; both are manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp (TSMC).