Embedded Operating Systems

Modern embedded products are increasingly dependent on complex software architectures to provide the rich features that end-users expect. In order to hit aggressive schedules, today’s embedded software engineering teams need to have expertise that is up-to-date, broad, and deep. Cardinal Peak thrives in this environment. Our program managers and senior developers have spent their entire careers living in this space.


Further, our team has shipped tens of products, many of which are based on open source packages. We are experienced with the ins and outs of the different licenses on these packages, and we have deep skills in using open source to accelerate development timelines and dramatically cut development costs, all while delivering embedded products of the highest quality levels.

We have experience ranging from board bring-up and RTOS development, to device driver development and system architecture, to embedded application development. Our embedded engineers are comfortable working side-by-side with hardware engineers and at employing tools such as scopes, logic analyzers, protocol monitors, and signal generators to debug a system. Our team has worked at all levels of embedded software development, including C and assembly code all the way up to embedded Java and JavaScript.

We have experience in a wide range of the hard, soft, and non-real-time environments that make up the more traditional embedded platforms, and we continue to expand our capabilities to newer platforms as they have become available. This includes designing software for System-on-a-Chip (SoC) architectures where multiple processors may reside on a single piece of silicon.

When we consider the choice of operating system for an IoT device, we consider the feature set, power, and cost constraints. The selection of hardware and OS are often linked. We generally begin the design process by considering the development effort along with the impact on bill-of-materials (BOM) cost. If the anticipated production volume is high, then BOM cost may drive the decision, whereas when the anticipated production volume is low, it may be more important to reduce development costs by leveraging a more advanced operating system.

Cardinal Peak is experienced in all aspects of embedded system design, we are well qualified to analyze and present these options to the customer in a holistic fashion, considering all aspects of cost and schedule.

Our engineering consultants have experience with the following embedded operating systems:

  • Embedded Linux
  • Android
  • FreeBSD
  • FreeRTOS
  • ThreadX
  • QNX
  • SELinux
  • VxWorks

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