Be it full virtualization or simply application isolation, protection is the keyword for the embedded community. Virtual machines are the hot topic for servers and clusters, and this fire will blaze on as microprocessor hardware and operating systems move up to meet the challenge.
All of the 64-bit processors—including those from AMD, Intel, and Sun, as well as chips based on the Power architecture—support hardware virtualization. Many of the 32-bit architectures provide useful but less functional support like Arm’s TrustZone.
The gating factor when utilizing these features will be the software. Simply using support designed for PCs and servers won’t work for most embedded applications, and migration to new embedded programming paradigms has never been quick. A select but growing group of designers likely will take advantage of these features.