JULY 15th, 2005
Rambus Reports Record Revenue
Rambus Inc. (NASDAQ:RMBS) reported record revenues with the announcement of its latest financial
report. For its second quarter ended June 30, 2005, the company had total revenues of $39.99 million compared to $34.97 million
for the same quarter a year ago. For the six months ended June 30, 2005, total revenues were $79.60 million compared to $67.51
million for the same period a year ago. For the first quarter ended March 31, 2005, total revenue was $39.61 million.
Although total revenue rose from the first to the second quarter
in 2005, contract revenue declined from $6.60 million to $5.39 million. Royalty revenues however increased to $34.60 million
from $33.01 million over the same period.
Harold Hughes, Chief Executive Officer at Rambus commented on the
level of interest in the company’s products, "We have taken important and necessary actions to protect our intellectual
property while we work on patent license renewals. We are very encouraged by the growing interest we are seeing in our advanced
high-speed interface designs, particularly in our XDR memory interface as well as the momentum we are seeing with our PCI
Rambus reported $471 million of cash, cash equivalents and marketable
securities for the end of its latest second quarter.
JULY 15th, 2005
Chipidea and TransDimensions (TDI), two IP core providers, have
joined forces to offer a high-speed USB intellectual property solution. The new solution includes Chipidea’s Physical
Layer IP core and TransDimension’s High Speed USB IP core and associated software.
The new solution is expected to offer designers a faster way to
construct a USB-based system on a chip (SoC). Business Development Manager at Chipidea, Milton Sousa, gave his synopsis of
the solution, "We are granting our customers a complete solution encompassing the PHY, controller and software that will strongly
reduce time to market and minimize risk. Our experience demonstrates that this complete solution can save months of design
time and eliminate a great deal of frustration when compared to integrating IP from different sources. Our solution with TDI
provides the most complete, integrated solution available in the market."
JULY 12th, 2005
Chipnuts adds to LSI Logic’s ZSP DSP Core Licenses
Chipnuts Technology, Inc, a Shanghai based integrated circuit company, has selected the ZSP500
digital signal processor core from the ZSP Product Division of LSI Logic Corporation (NYSE:LSI). John Yu, Chief Operating
Officer, of Chipnuts Technology explained that the choice was made in part because of the core’s low power consumption
and LSI Logic’s road map, "Its combination of best-in-class code-density and outstanding balance of performance and
power consumption made the ZSP500 a good choice for Chipnuts, Additionally, LSI Logic's comprehensive roadmap of software-compatible
ZSP cores, commitment to local support and network of Solution Partners enables us to produce advanced mobile multimedia solutions
now while planning for future functionality and features."
The ZSP500 core, according to LSI Logic has been designed for power-critical
applications required for today’s consumer and wireless applications. George Liao, Managing Director of Asia Pacific,
ZSP Products Division of LSI Logic noted the ZSP core product line has been well accepted for specific wireless applications
and listed a number of China based companies that have adopted the technology, "The ZSP technology has achieved tremendous
momentum in 2G, 2.5G and 3G wireless applications where its combination of low power and high performance makes it uniquely
suitable for handling both the baseband processing and the application processor functions in handheld devices of today and
tomorrow. It is gratifying to see an emerging company like Chipnuts Technology join industry leaders such as Huawei, Datang,
UTStarcom, Chongyou Information Technology and others in China, in selecting the comprehensive solutions developed by the
ZSP Product Division."
JULY 7th, 2005
ARC International Wins 900,000 British Pound Deal for Smart Card
ARC International (LSE:ARK), a provider of microprocessor and digital signal processing cores,
has valued a recent license agreement with an undisclosed smart card customer at 900,000 British Pounds. Derek Meyer, ARC
International’s Vice President of Marketing, implied that the agreement was for a security application, "In applications
where data protection is of the utmost importance, our configurable technology offers licensees the ability to create highly
differentiated solutions. This new agreement underscores the growing adoption of ARC's solutions for high-growth markets,
and we are pleased that another industry leader has joined the list of more than one hundred ARC licensees."
MOSAID Technologies Incorporated (TSX:MSD), a company with operations
in memory cores for the design of integrated circuits and memory test equipment, reported that revenues for its fourth quarter
ended April 30, 2005 were $16.5 million compared to $8.8 million for the same quarter a year ago. For its entire fiscal year,
MOSAID reported revenue of $49.7 million compared to $28.4 million for its previous fiscal year.
President and Chief Executive Officer of MOSAID attributed the revenue increase to patent license agreements related to its
memory IP cores, "Fiscal year 2005 was a pivotal year for MOSAID. As a result of signing patent licenses with Samsung and
Hynix we have recorded our highest annual revenues in three years, and we expect to have a growing and highly profitable IP
business for the foreseeable future. With this change in our financial position we are investing again to grow MOSAID's businesses,
through both internal development and acquisition." MOSAID also announced that it will begin dividend payments to its stockholders.
The company indicated that its cash balance and short-term marketable securities at the end of fiscal 2005 were $65.9 million.
MOSAID also projected that for its first quarter of fiscal year 2006, revenues would be in the range of $14.3 million
to $14.7 million. For the year, the company has forecast that revenues would be between $58 million and $62 million. Of the
total 2006 revenue, the company anticipates that about 80 percent would be from its Intellectual Property Division.
JUNE 30th, 2005
Denali Software and Taracom Integrated Products announced the availability
of an integrated property solution for Serial ATA (SATA) applications. The solution includes Denali’s Databahn SATA
controller core and TaraCom’s TRC3002 SATA physical layer (PHY) core. For system performance verification, the solution
also includes Denali’s PureSpec verification IP.
Emphasizing that the new solution enables designers of disk drive
systems to meet time-to-market constraints was David Lin, Vice President at Denali "Design teams are increasingly looking
for best-in-class IP solutions for deploying complex interface standards such as SATA. By working with TaraCom, we will be
providing the additional value of a highly integrated solution that spans all the way from the PHY to the system interface,
including system-level verification. This is exactly what customers need to achieve a high-quality design under tremendous
Serial ATA has emerged as a replacement to parallel ATA hard
disk drive controllers. SATA controllers presently feature 1.5 Gbps transfer rates, with 3.0 Gbps expected to be arrive as
the next generation comes on the market. Another characteristic of SATA hard drive connectors, according to Denali, is that
they have smaller hard drive connector.
JUNE 29th, 2005
Innovative Silicon Inc. (ISi), a company that has developed a memory
cell technology that has the potential to greatly reduce the silicon area memory requirements for SoC designs, has secured
$16 million in Series B funding. Austin Ventures led the round, which also included investments from Highland Capital
Partners, Index Ventures and Auriga Partners.
ISi's technology, called Z-RAM for Zero Capacitor DRAM, is
based on the emerging Silicon on Insulator (SOI) process technology and according to the company can increase embedded SRAM
density in the order of five fold and double the density of embedded DRAM.
Z-RAM technology has received positive feedback from designers according
to Basil Horangic, General Partner at Austin Ventures, "The feedback we received on Z-RAM from SOC and microprocessor
designers and manufacturers was outstanding. Z-RAM is revolutionary in that it really turns what was a minor bug of SOI into
a major feature and achieves for the first time a true scalable single device memory. Embedded memory is now so important
to advanced designs that we expect the Z-RAM innovation to have a major effect on semiconductor economics and performance."
The minor bug Mr. Horangic refers to is the floating body effect
associated with the SOI process. The floating body effects permits the novel one transistor, capacitor-less cell structure
of the design. It should be noted that IBM and Advanced Micro Devices have already adopted the SOI process for their newer
microprocessors. One of the reasons for SOI’s popularity is that chip designs based on SOI have lower power
consumption ratings - a primary consideration for chips targeted at the laptop computer design. The laptop market has
emerged as the primary growth engine of the overall PC market.
JUNE 21st, 2005
Ignious has made its entrance into the accelerated SoC Design
Tool Market with a focus on computer intensive, multi microprocessor core designs. The company demonstrated its technology,
called the SystemWeaver Multicore-Management, with a SoC that standardized and facilitated the integration of 32 ARC core
Noting that the multi-core processor technology has become more
popular was Karl Auker, Director of Strategic Alliances at ARC International, "An increasing number of ARC customers are implementing
multiple cores on SoCs targeted at compute-intensive applications. By working with partners such as Ignios, ARC's licensees
will have access to technologies that can ease the process of multicore software development and debug. We are pleased with
the work that Ignios has done in building this demonstration."
Ignios indicated that the Electronic System Level design tool has
been designed to eliminate source code recompilation for each of the processors in a multi-core design.
JUNE 21st, 2005
MIPS Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:MIPS), through an agreement with D2 Technologies,
plans to further lower the cost of VoIP technology. As part of the agreement, D2 Technologies will implement specific VoIP
algorithms into its MIPS32 24KE cores, as part of MIP's VoIP EcoSystem license programs. D2’s VoIP technology, called
vPort, is an algorithm that has been tailored for RISC microprocessors, as opposed to traditional DSP architectures. Functions
that are provided in D2's RISC "DSP soft" software include network, signaling, and voice processing, ordinary implemented
on a DSP chip, now are part of a called DSP software, or soft DSP, routine.
Both companies perceived the combination of MIPS’ RISC core and vPort
technology, as a way to lower the costs of VoIP implementations and potentially give more software programmable user options.
According to Russ Bell, VP of Marketing for MIPS Technologies, "The combination
of D2's VoIP software solution and the performance and functionality of our 24KE processor cores gives semiconductor companies
and OEMs a real advantage in being able to reduce costs and accelerate their time to market."
David Wong, President of D2 noted that lower VoIP costs will translate
into more applications, "The cost-sensitive, rapidly evolving VoIP market offers significant growth opportunities, and we
believe that our customers will benefit greatly from high-performance, single-processor MIPS-Based VoIP solutions."
JUNE 14th, 2005
Spectra Licensing Group LLC, the worldwide licensing agent for France
Telecom's Turbo Code Licensing Program, has licensed France Telecom's Turbo Code patents to Freescale Semiconductor (NYSE:FSL)
for use in Freescale's 3G wireless communications products.
With the license agreement, announced in late May of 2005, Erik
Johnson, Director of Sales and Marketing at Spectra Licensing Group mentioned Spectra's ability to work with ASIC and DSP
companies, "We are pleased to license a leader in wireless communications such as Freescale," said "This agreement represents
a significant step in the evolution of the Turbo Code Licensing Program and our ability to work with manufacturers developing
Turbo Codes in DSP and ASIC solutions for the 3G market.."
Turbo Codes, a type of forward error correction code, are considered
a relatively new way to increase the data rate of CDMA based networks.
JUNE 14th, 2005
Turbo Code Software Tool Provides Path to Wireless Power Savings,
Improved Coverage and Data Rates
Cambridge Consultants now offers a software program called TurboDesigner used in the design
of wireless base stations and terminals. The tool has been developed to help select the best forward error correction (FEC)
code for a wireless design. . The software, which is available as part of the company's consultant services, will generate
test vectors for HDL simulations to assist in the development of ASICs and FPGAs.
The selection of the right code will have a significant effect on
the performance of a design, according to Monty Barlow, DSP Group Leader with Cambridge Consultants, "Our experience has taught
us that the right turbo coding implementation can double the coverage or data rate of a wireless system, or halve the amount
of transmission power required. The technology is extremely desirable - but the problem comes with real-world implementations
of decoders - especially those designed for high data rate applications like WiMAX. There are a large number of factors a
designer needs to tweak, each with its own subtle effect on performance and cost. This software produces accurate and quick
measurement of turbo code performance".
Mr. Barlow went on to say that "Shrinking silicon costs are now
enabling wider exploitation of the relatively new technology of turbo codes. For us, the first major focus has been for WiMAX
development work - where no suitable off-the-shelf cores exist and we need to design our own hardware - but we also expect
turbo codes to be a significant enabler for other emerging wireless systems such as digital broadcasting, and even UWB."
JUNE 10th, 2005
S2C has announced its entrance into the accelerated SOC chip design
market with the introduction of its patent pending TAI IP (Testable, Analyzable, and Integratable) interconnect technology.
That technology, billed as a plug-and-play tool for the integration of pre-designed silicon IP (Intellectual Property) core
blocks, is credited with the capability to reduce SoC design time, the most complex chips, in the order of three to six months.
The prototype tool also has been designed to give software developers a working hardware prototype to test system software
at the initial stages of the design process.
Thomas Huang, CEO of S2C Inc. described in detail the company’s
approach to IP integration in SoC designs. "Electronic hardware innovation depends on architecture, components, ASSP, IP modules,
and SoCs, while software innovation depends on stable hardware and operating environments. Consequently, prototyping is a
must step in the development of any electronic product; it provides an early demo of the hardware innovation to customers
and provides an implementation platform for software developers prior to production. The step from concept to prototype hardware
must be repeated numerous times during the iterative design process. We targeted this step as a bottleneck to eliminate since
it is just a time-consuming mapping of one representation to another that is unrelated to innovation. To accelerate innovation,
the designer must be able to easily access IP and quickly assemble a prototype that enables hardware and software to work
together to demonstrate system functionality. TAI IP technology and our FPGA-based ESL design solution are the breakthroughs
that achieve this objective. Current beta partners who have applied our technology conservatively estimate a time savings
of 3 to 6 months."
The two products that S2C offers for accelerated SoC designs include
TAI Compiler Cration and the IP Porter System. The two tools provide for encrypted FPGA based IP modules and the development
of FPGA based prototypes of SoC designs. The company indicates that the tools are available now and can be previewed at the
upcoming DAC conference scheduled to begin June 13, 2005.
JUNE 8th, 2005
Cygnus Communications, Inc, a fabless semiconductor company, has
completed the acquisition of SiWorks, Inc. SiWorks, based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, provides Wireless Semiconductor Intellectual
Property for a number of wireless standards. These include the IEEE-802.16d standard or the WiMAX standard, UWB-MBOA or the
Multiband-OFDM Alliance standard, and the IEEE-802.11a/b/g standard, otherwise known as the WiFi standard.
Kenneth Stanwood, Cygnus Communications' CEO commented on the acquisition,
"SiWorks IEEE-802.16d compliant SDR is a perfect complement to the Cygnus Communications ASIC development effort in support
of WiMAX compliant Fixed and Mobile Wireless Metropolitan Area Networks. The acquisition of SiWorks accelerates our entry
into the huge IEEE-802.16e market, and we're leveraging the success of the IEEE-802.16d development to be the first to introduce
802.16e compliant ASIC products."
JUNE 1st, 2005
Imagination Technologies Group PLC reported that its revenue for
the year ended March 31, 2005 reached 31.5 million pounds, down slightly from 31.2 million reached the year before. The company
indicated that royalty revenues increased to 1.3 million pounds in fiscal 2005 up from 0.9 million pounds in 2004. The company
stated that 2.5 million chips now incorporate its technology.
Other items that the company noted in the second half were an increase
in PURE Digital revenues of 50 percent over the first half to 9.8 million pounds. The company attributed the Christmas season
to the increase in PURE Digital revenue. PURE Digital is the company’s product line that addresses the Digital Audio
Broadcasting (DAB) radio market. With over 80 products shipping with Imagination’s DAB technology, which includes products
from companies such as Philips, Sharp and Sony, Imagination estimates it has over 70 percent market share.
Elaborating on its DAB product revenue, Imagination noted that Frontier
Silicon’s Chorus processor chip is based on its META technology, and that chip has been shipped in over 1 million DAB
based products – or 70 percent of the installed base. Projecting out into the future, the company indicated that for
the United Kingdom, 1.2 million DAB units are expected to ship in the 2004 / 2005 financial year and that number is
expected to increase to somewhere between 5 and 6 million units in 2008.
JUNE 1st, 2005
Stretch, Inc. has selected Mentor Graphics (NASDAQ:MENT) IP core
design technology. Specifically, Stretch licensed Mentor Graphics’ 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet Media Access Controller
(MAC) Intellectual Property (IP). Stretch's S5620 processor, which was just recently announced, is based on Mentor's 10/100/1000
Ethernet MAC (PE-MCXMAC). Stretch's S5610 processor also was based on Mentor's Ethernet IP core.
Commenting on the selection of Mentor's IP was Reynette Au, Vice
President of Marketing at Stretch. "We selected Mentor based on their expertise, solid product quality, and position as the
industry leader for Ethernet MAC IP. Mentor's 10/100/1000 Ethernet IP was the perfect solution for our processor design --
the ease of integration and exceptional customer support were other key factors in our decision to adopt Mentor Graphics IP."
MAY 26th, 2005
Elliptic Semiconductor Launches Security
Portfolio for Digital Rights Management
Elliptic Semiconductor has put on the market a portfolio of products targeted towards the digital
rights management (DRM) market, a market that serves to protect copyrighted material such as movies and music from infringement.
The company’s new products are a result of a close working relationship with MIPS Technologies Inc. and a number of
consumer oriented System on Chip designers. The IP core based product solutions support the Microsoft Windows DRM, IPTC and
Open Mobile Alliance 2.0 DRM standards. With encrypted throughput rates of 1000 Mbps the product family has been designed
for use in cellular phones, which are expected to soon offer on a mass scale a wide range of copyrighted music and videos.
Cell phones are not the only market Elliptic’s products address. The company also has placed a significant product development
effort in the products to address the needs of the settop market.
MAY 26th, 2005
Silicon Works Lowers Cost of Smart LCD Drivers with PenTile
Silicon Works Co., Ltd, a mixed signal semiconductor company based in Daejeon, Korea, through
the integration of PenTile, a technology from Clairvoyante Incorporated, is now sampling its RGBW qVGA system on chip (SoC).
The new driver is expected to lower the cost and power of smart drivers and increase brightness perceived display resolution.
The first driver off the production floor offers 262,000 colors and a resolution of 240X320. The company notes also that its
driver only requires two-thirds of the memory of standard RGB stripe smart drivers. Furthermore the new driver is reported
to only require one-third the number of data drivers.
Mr. Dae-Keun Han, CEO of Silicon Works commented on PenTile in regards
to the handset and portable electronics market, "Building PenTile RGBW technology into our SoC driver enables us to offer
a power-efficient, single-chip solution that does not require customers to sacrifice performance for cost. Using our new smart
driver makes it possible for our customers to keep up with the market pressures that compel the design of competitively priced
displays for high-resolution, high-performance mobile products."
Clairvoyante, Inc., which licenses PenTile Matrix, develops pixel
architectures and algorithms specific to the flat-panel display market. That company was founded in 2000 and has two offices
in California, one in Sebastopol and another in Cupertino, CA.
MAY 20th, 2005
Sonics' SMART Interconnects IP technology, like many leading chips,
has been almost everywhere in the world. On May 13th, 2005 the company announced that over 100 million SoC integrated circuits
have shipped with the technology. Among the company's tier one semiconductor companies are Broadcom, Texas Instruments, Toshiba
Corp., Samsung and several unnamed Original Equipment Manufacturers. The technology, which is used in a number of different
end-market applications is believed to be specifically pervasive in the wireless and handheld markets. One reason is that
SonicsMX, one of Sonic's products, was designed for those system architectures. SonixsMX product, which has silicon area and
power reduction features, was developed with Texas Instruments for that company's OMAP processor chip.
Grant Pierce, Sonics' President indicated that the product should
reach a shipment rate higher than most others, "This milestone places Sonics among the top intellectual property (IP) suppliers
in the semiconductor industry. And, because our designs span a very wide range of served markets, and our adoption rate is
accelerating, we expect our shipments to outpace even the well established IP suppliers in the future." A new version of SonicsMX
, released in March 2005, is also expected to help sustain the momentum. The product, which incorporates 128-bit data widths
and supports AHB bus connections, is now, according to Sonics, under evaluation at nearly all the major wireless and handheld
SoC developers. Sonics other products, SiliconBackplane, SMART Interconnect, SonicsS3220 and MemMax are also reported as being
Sonics IP based design methodology has been developed to standardize
and automate the IP block interconnection process for specific chip design architectures. The process has been attributed
to the reduction of design time, layout planning time, reroute time, in addition to the reduction of silicon area, power consumption
and timing delays. Other sited benefits include easy IP core reuses - all of which add up to reduced development and manufacturing
MAY 20th, 2005
Tezzaron Semiconductor, which is one of the first companies to offer
a stacked "silicon-vertically interconnected "3D IC processor, has topped off its design with a core from CAST, Inc.
Tezzaron's processor, based on a 160 nanometer process, features 128 Kbytes of SRAM memory built on top of a 8051 microcontroller,
CAST's R80515 core. Giving reasons for the selection of CAST's core was Robert Patti, Tezzaron's CTO, "We wanted to demonstrate
our technology with a workhorse processor that's still used in thousands of products and devices around the world. CAST proved
to be a great partner-easy to work with and providing excellent support-and implementing their core was painless and straightforward."
Tezzaron's FaStack process is based on multiple wafer layers, stacked
on top of each other, and connected together with "through-silicon" vertical interconnections. Tezzaron indicated that the
thermal build-up problem that has been characteristic of old-generation stacked technologies has been solved with a wafer
MAY 20th, 2005
Tensilica, Inc. has reported that its Xtensa LX processor, a reconfigurable
licensable core, has obtained the highest score ever reported on the Networking Version 2.0 benchmark suite of the Embedded
Microprocessor Benchmark Consortium (EEMBC). The scores, which were based on simulation, where compared to other popular microprocessor
cores. Tensilica indicated that the Xtensa scored high because the Xtensa LX has a 4X code density advantage and a 100X advantage
in die area and power dissipation.
Tensilica, founded in 1997, also has a high score in the core licensee
department. These licensees are from a wide variety of companies in the electronic industry - from small fabless
companies, to large IDMS and system companies. Well known customers that Tensilica lists as customers include ALPS, Cisco
Systems, Fujitsu Ltd., Hughes Network Systems, LG Electronics, NEC Laboratories America, Nippon Telephone and Telegraph, Olympus
Optical Co. Ltd., Seiko Epson, Sony and Victor Company of Japan (JVC). In the tier one semiconductor market, Tensilica names
Agilent, ATI, Broadcom, Conexant Systems, Cypress Semiconductor, FujiFilm Microdevices, Marvell Technology Group, NEC Corporation,
NVIDIA, and STMicroelectronics as customers.
Also on Tensilica's customer list are a number of less well-known operations,
which include smaller fabless companies and research organizations: AMCC(JNI Corporation), Astute Networks, Avision, Bay Microsystems,
Berkeley Wireless Research Center, Crimson Microsystems, ETRI, Hudson Soft, Ikanos Communications, NetEffect, Neterion, sci-worx,
Solid State Systems, Stretch, and TranSwitch Corporation.
MAY 19th, 2005
Sarnoff Offers Snap-On ESD IO Protection for Chip and IP Designs
Sarnoff Europe, which developed a silicon area optimized electrostatic discharge (ESD) design
several years ago, has now released ESDdoctor. The new tool, which includes the license for the actual design and layout of
the circuit, was developed to simplify the ESD protection process for designs in progress.
Koen Verhaege, Senior Director of Sarnoff's Integrated Circuit Systems
& Services Business Unit, gave an overview of the benefits of the product and remarked on just how easy it is to use,
"ESDdoctor is just what the name implies - a fast and trustworthy cure for ESD challenges or problems that would otherwise
slow up the completion of a design, causing critical market introduction delays and expensive rework and remasking. It's almost
as easy as a cut-and-paste operation in a word processing program. Just drop in the core and the ESD design is complete. "
As a note of reassurance to those that deal in the complex world of chip technology, he added, "The big advantage of Sarnoff's
ESDdoctor solutions is: you drop them in and they work."
ESDdoctor is based on Sarnoff's mature ESD technology, known worldwide
as TakeCharge. TakeCharge has been time tested in a number of different CMOS processes and the now popular SOI process. Sarnoff
Europe lists its licensees, which include several tier one semiconductor companies, as Toshiba, Sony, Epson, OKI, JRC, Hynix,
Infineon, Altera, PMC-Sierra, Renesas, Ricoh, Matsushita, and Scintera.
MAY 19th, 2005
PMC-Sierra VoIP Adapter Solution now Available - Based on MIPS
PMC-Sierra, Inc. (Nasdaq:PMCS) has announced that its Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) Analog Telephone
Adapter platform is shipping in volume. The platform, designed for the Residential Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) market
provides all the necessary chip hardware and software for the development of certified VoIP designs.
Ravi Periasamy, Vice President of Software and Systems Development at PMC-Sierra
noted that the solution was tailored to reduce their customers' development cycle time, "PMC-Sierra's VoIP ATA solution is
the first platform to use our Linux-based software environment, encapsulating all software elements from low level device
drivers, high quality voice encoders and decoders, all the way up the software stack including signaling protocols and management
interfaces. Providing such integrated software greatly reduces our customers' design efforts enabling them to bring products
to market with a reduced development cycle."
PMC-Sierra's VoIP Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) solution includes hardware
and software that supports the latest VoIP product features. These include 2 FXS ports for 2 simultaneous voice calls, G.711
and G.729 voice encoder/decoders support, a WAN and LAN side Ethernet port, voice channel encryption (DES, 3DES, AES) and
fax relay support with T.38 compliance. The solution permits a VoIP adapter to be built with PMC-Sierra's MSP2015 VoIP processor
or PMC-Sierra's MSP2020 VoIP processor, which includes a security engine. The MSP Multi-Service Processors are based on a
MIPS processor IP hardware core, a core that has gained considerable traction in the VoIP market.
PMC-Sierra's VoIP ATA solutions have received international carrier-class
certification from Telecommunications Technology Association Korea, and verification from China Telecommunication Technology
MAY 18th, 2005
Chipidea Closes 12 Million Euro with Fabless and IP Core
Chipidea, based in Portugal, has secured 12 Million Euro in Series B funding. That company,
which is focused on the wireless, wireline communications, connectivity, multimedia and power management markets, licenses
analog and mixed signal solutions from the block level to the subsystem level. Funding for Chipidea came from Kennet Venture
Partners, Vision Capital, BCP Capital and BPI/Fundo Caravela.
Michael Elias of Kennet Venture Partners, the lead investment company,
commented on the financial operations of the company, "Josť Franca and his colleagues have built a world class semiconductor
IP business using very little external capital. Kennet specializes in providing expansion financing to capital-efficient business
with global opportunities. We are therefore delighted at the opportunity to invest in Chipidea and help take it to the next
level of development."
Chipidea, founded in 1997, employs over 180 people in several offices
throughout the world. The company states that it has been profitable and has seen double-digit growth every year since its
MAY 18th, 2005
IPExtreme Lands $6 Million for IP Core Development and
Intellectual Property (IP) cores, the building blocks of integrated circuits have become more
popular as integrated circuits have grown larger and more complex. With this has come the need to provide engineers with larger
and more complex IP building blocks and a growing market. As time goes on, some believe that funding for IP Core companies
could rival that fabless companies now see.
Indicative of that scenario is the funding of IPExtreme. That company
has secured $6 million in Series A funding for its IP core efforts. Alloy Ventures and SmartForest Ventures, the two Series
A investors echoed the promise of what some still consider a young industry and young company. Dan Rubin, Partner at Alloy,
commented on the IP industry and IPExtreme, "We feel the semiconductor IP market is still in its infancy and represents a
significant business opportunity beyond traditional IP companies. IPextreme has extensive commercial and technical IP experience,
and we look forward to them changing the industry by getting established semiconductor companies into the IP game through
their innovative business model." Huoy-Ming Yeh at SmartForest noted IPExtreme's established market position, "We find IPextreme
an attractive investment since they have already proven their business model by establishing relationships with leading semiconductor
companies and generating revenue. With their desirable patent-pending IP packaging technology and unique IP skill and experience,
they are well positioned for success."
IPExtreme, which already has offices in Campbell, California and
Munich, Germany plans to use the funds to add to its marketing, engineering and sales power. Besides that, the company plans
to also increase its revenue through the age-old strategy of awareness building.
MAY 18th, 2005
PLD Applications' IP Core Revenue Up 87 Percent - Record Revenues
PLD Applications (PLDA), a PCI Intellectual Property (IP) core company, reported that its revenue
for 2004 increased 87 percent. The company also reported that revenue and bookings for its first quarter of 2005 achieved
new records. Jean-Yves Brena, President of PLDA, gave reasons for the revenue increase, "We attribute our continuing growth
to two factors, a strong commitment to a loyal and growing client base and a long-term strategy designed to meet our clients'
present and future needs."
PLDA also reported that it signed PCI Express IP Core contracts
with several semiconductor companies. The company also listed a number of companies it is working with, which included many
tier one integrated circuit, EDA and electronic system companies as well as one of the worlds largest software companies.
The listed companies included Agere Systems, Agilent Technologies, Alcatel, Atmel, Cisco Systems, Freescale Semiconductor,
Fujitsu, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Intel, Matsushita, Mentor Graphics, Microsoft, PMC-Sierra, Quantum, Sony and Sun Microsystems.
PLDA has sold over 500 licenses.
With the report, Arnaud Schleich, Vice President of PLDA implied
that the success of the company was due to low cost and easy to use IP Core products, "The adoption cost has never been lower
in both financial terms and integration time."
MAY 13th, 2005
Mobius Offers All-Silicon
Copernicus Clock Core - Accuracy and Stability Noted
Mobius Microsystems, Inc., a fabless chip company has announced
its Copernicus Clock, an all-silicon clock which eliminates the need for external components. The IP Core, built with a standard
CMOS process, utilizes a CMOS integratable resonant inductor-capacitor reference and compensation technique to obtain an initial
accuracy of 0.1% and a total frequency accuracy of less than 0.25%. The all-silicon clock can generate frequencies from the
kHz to GHz range.
The Copernicus Clock is available for license as an IP hard macro
core for virtually every type of chip product available from ASICs to microprocessors. The company also notes that the macro
is extremely hardy and is well suited for tough operating environments were high shock; high humidity and high vibration are
Dr. Michael McCorquodale, CTO and CEO at the company commented on
the new performance standard the product has set for the industry, "Mobius' Copernicus Clock sets a new standard for the accuracy
and stability of all-silicon clock technologies. Designers will appreciate its unparalleled performance in a wide range of
MAY 11th, 2005
TTP Communications plc (LSE:TTC), a semiconductor IP core company
with a focus on the cellular phone market, reported revenues for the its fiscal year ended March 31, 2005 reached 62 million
English Pounds, up from 49.6 million English pounds over last years revenues. With the report, TTP also stated that the number
of handsets that incorporate its technology reached about 40 million this year compared to about 23 million last year.
TTP also broke out its Silicon Business Unit (SBU) revenue for the
year. For the year, SBU had sales of 15.8 million English Pounds, up 66 percent over 9.5 million English Pounds brought in
the year before. TTP also gave an idea about the monetary value associated with its silicon licenses - SBU licenses numbered
12 this year, compared to 5 for the year before. The company notes that chipsets based on its silicon cores are pervasive
in the marketplace. The Silicon Business Unit at the end of the year employed 121.
Royalty revenues also grew significantly. For the year, royalty
revenue reached 18 million English Pounds, compared to 16.2 million English Pounds in 2003 - up 11 percent. Chipset royalties
revenue growth was more pronounced - an increase of 34% year over year. The increase was attributed to newer chipsets and
its chipset partners, specifically Analog Devices. TTP's products support the GSM and 3GPP cellular standards.
TTP also stated that it had increased the number of employees in
the Asia Pacific, which includes China - to about 100. The company, however, noted that competition in the Chinese market
, a market where it obtained 33 percent of its revenue, had increased. Although the company reports that its booked orders
are up 33 percent, the company indicates that it does not expect to see any fundamental improvement in the Chinese market
- specifically at the low-end of the handset market, where Chinese manufacturers have seen a decline in total handset shipments.
MAY 9th, 2005
MIPS Technologies, Inc., (NASDAQ:MIPS), through a license agreement
with ITE Technology, Inc., has moved the company into the music player market. ITE Technology intends to use the MIPS32 4KEm
Pro and 4KEp Pro cores to develop chips for the MP3, Portable Media Player and other audio and video markets. The agreement
adds to MIPs core base in the portable consumer market, which includes Sony's Playstation Portable.
Vincent Hu, Chairman of ITE commented on the power-based decision
to license MIPS' cores, "After careful evaluation, we decided to adopt the MIPS architecture because of the high-performance,
low-power and small footprint delivered by the 4KEm and 4KEp Pro cores. With their large writeback cache memories and user-defined
instructions, the 4KEm and 4KEp Pro cores will enable IC designers to optimize the performance and battery life of portable
ITE, based in Taiwan, is noted for its market leadership in the
I/O chip market.
MAY 6th, 2005
SIPAC Joins Open Core Protocol International Partnership
Open Core Protocol International Partnership (OCP-IP) has added
the System Integration and IP Authoring Center (SIPAC) a member. With the addition of Korea's IP Core clearing house, OCP-IP
also announced its Korean web site, in what is a move to capture Korea's base of IP Core and fabless companies.
SIPAC, which came out of support from the Korean Intellectual
Property Office in 2001 is involved in IP core web-based trading as well as legal and technical protection of IP.
Ian Mackintosh, President OCP-IP spoke about the reasons for the
acceptance of OCP in Asia, "Interest in OCP in Asia is extremely high, and with the addition of recent members, such as Toshiba,
NEC, Kawasaki, Zuken, Realtek, SIPAC and others, we recognized and addressed the need to deliver valuable OCP information
to our members in their national language. This is another example of OCP-IP providing the tools and infrastructure demanded
by our rapidly broadened base of members. Local language accessibility drives the globalization of the OCP standard so that
both members and visitors can do their jobs efficiently and effectively."
MAY 5th, 2005
CebaTech Inc., a company with Intellectual Property(IP) cores
and EDA tools to facilitate the implementation of communication protocols into integrated circuit designs, has closed a $4.5
million Series B funding round. The company, which is based in New Jersey, was funded through NJTC Venture Fund, SAS Investors
and 2M Technology Ventures.
Robert Chefitz, partner at SAS Investors, praised the founder's
background, Tim Sulivan and his team, "Tim was an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at SAS Investors in 2003. His credibility was
well complemented by a top notch team that had more than a dozen IC design wins in the last decade, and the industry pain-point
related to simulating and testing communication protocols with existing EDA tools is a well recognized one. These factors
led us to close the Series-A investment in less than 75 days when Tim had pitched the Series-A investment opportunity to SAS
Investors a year ago. Since then CebaTech team has surpassed all our expectations."
Robert Chefitz, partner at NJTC Venture Fund, and now a board member
of CebaTech, elaborated on the company's product and space, " In addition to revolutionizing the way communication chips are
designed, the team is targeting to realize paradigm-shifting protocol-based communication products in the IPSec/iSCSI/Packet-Filtering
APRIL 29th, 2005
Mercury Computer Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:MRCY), a company that has
diversified into the semiconductor IP Core and EDA design tools market, reported that its total revenues for the third quarter
ended March 31, 2005 increased 42 percent year-over-year to $64.3 million. The company's OEM Solutions, which focuses on semiconductor
solutions, saw its revenue advance on the same order, growing to $14.2 million, up $4.9 million from last year and up $3.8
"We are pleased with the strong results posted for the third quarter,
in our defense and commercial businesses," said Jay Bertelli, CEO of Mercury, "On the strength of our backlog, particularly
in our defense business unit, we anticipate full-year revenues to be at the top end of previous expectations, or $245 million."
The company also has a medical unit, the Imaging and Visualization Solutions and a computer unit, Momentum Computer.
APRIL 21, 2005
Disruptive Memory Company, Heads toward Funding Records, now at $86 Million
T-RAM Semiconductor, a 1T memory cell company with disruptive technology, completed its Series
C round of $40 million, bringing the company's total funding to date to $86 million. InterWest Partners led the round, which
also included CenterPoint Ventures, Mayfield, US Venture Partners, Tallwood Venture Capital and New Enterprise Associates.
Kenneth Young, CEO of T-RAM explained the company's production status and the significance of the technology to the memory
market, "The funding comes at a high point in the company's technology roadmap. With working silicon verifying the success
of our first high-performance memory chips, we are now ready to commercialize this technology. In fact, our first memory chips
will soon be launched -- with densities ranging from 9Mb up to 72Mb -- the highest commercially available density from any
SRAM manufacturer today. Initial applications for this first-generation technology will be focused on the high- performance,
high-density synchronous SRAM (SSRAM) market, which is dominated by high-end wired products in both communications and computing."
According to Victor Westerlind, who was just appointed to T-RAM's
board, "The market is eager for higher density on-chip RAM to both lower cost and boost performance in current and future
products. T-RAM is responding to this need with a technology that promises to do it all-increase density, reduce die size,
cut costs and lower risk. As a result, T-RAM could truly change the playing field and accelerate the advancement of next-generation
Bob Paluck, General Partner of CenterPoint Ventures, also seemed
enthused about the technology. "We look forward to helping the company commercialize one of the first major SRAM memory advances
in more than a decade. T-RAM's innovative technology will serve as the foundation for a host of new memory chips. And given
its density, cost and performance advantages, it will offer the extendibility customers need for their future generation products."
APRIL 21, 2005
MIPS Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: MIPS), a RISC microprocessor IP
Core and Contract Silicon company, reported that revenues for its latest quarter, its third quarter, were $16.8 million. This
was up from $12.6 million for the same quarter a year ago. At the same time the company reported that its latest quarterly
royalty revenue rose to $8.6 million, up 45 percent from $5.9 million in the same quarter a year ago.
Casey Eichler, CFO at MIPS Technologies detailed the royalty revenue,
"Robust licensing activity, driven by the 24K core family but evident throughout our entire product line, resulted in 11 new
licenses this last quarter. Six of these new agreements represent business from new licensees, bringing the total number of
licensees to over 100. Royalties continue to reflect the increasing number of new and existing MIPS-Based applications found
in the dynamically growing digital consumer and networking markets."
John Bourgoin, CEO at MIPS Technologies gave even more details,
"The breadth and strength of our licensee base is evidenced not only in our royalty growth this quarter, but also by the fact
that over half of our royalty paying customers generated more than $100,000 in quarterly royalties. Our licensing revenue
also grew again as global industry leaders and startups alike continue to realize the compelling cost, power, and performance
advantages of designing their SoCs with MIPS-Based solutions from MIPS and our licensees. The 24K and 4KE core families in
particular, continue to hit the 'sweet spot' of higher total system performance with low power and area savings for a broad
range of digital entertainment and networking applications." MIPS has won a number of new licenses recently in the DTV and
APRIL 21, 2005
As a signal that STMicroelectronics is well established as a provider
of 90 nanometer based technology, the company indicates that it has implemented, verified and fabricated its MIPHY (Multi-Interface
PHY) Physical Layer interface IP Core with 90 nanometer process technology. The milestone prepares the company for the migration
of all its SoC products to 90 nm from 130 nm later in the year.
The MIPHY macro-cell solution permits one disk drive chip to support
multiple types of disk drives, enabling disk drive companies to eliminate the need to carry inventories of different types
of disk controller chips. The macro-cell supports Fibre Channel, PCI Express, SATA and SCSI interface standards. The design
also includes a Time-Base Generator based on a harmonic Phase Locked Loop (PLL). The PLL has a jitter specification of less
than 2 picoseconds with high noise rejection.
APRIL 19th, 2005
Morpho Technologies has announced the first close of a $10 million
Series C Funding Round. Smart Technology Ventures and BridgeWest LLC have co-led the round. Morpho is in the software
defined radio market and provides reconfigurable DSP Intellectual Property (IP) Cores. Morpho was founded in 2000.
APRIL 18th, 2005
DVD6C License Group Now Includes Sanyo and Sharp
Representing to a large extent Japan's DVD stronghold is The DVD6C
Licensing Group. This group with the recent joining of Sharp Corporation and SANYO Electric Co. Ltd. now includes Hitachi,
Ltd., International Business Machines Corporation, Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (Panasonic), Mitsubishi Electric
Corporation, Toshiba Corporation, Victor Company of Japan, Ltd. (JVC) and Warner Home Video Inc.
DVD6C makes available DVD patents through a patent pool of DVD intellectual property
from its member companies. Its license program started in 1999.
APRIL 14th, 2005
Accelchip Introduces Time Saving RTL Based Linear Algebra
Accelchip Incorporated, a company that offers design tools that
convert algorithms to silicon IP cores, has introduced its fixed point linear algebra intellectual property cores. The cores
offer the capability to include matrix factorization and inversion as hardware IP cores, without the need to implement linear
algorithms in C on DSP platforms.
Michael Bohm, CTO at AccelChip explained the applications of the
chip technology, "Matrix factorization and inversion are used with algorithms utilizing linear algebra techniques, such as
adaptive filters, which are used in a wide range of applications from radar to global positioning. AccelCore IP cores are
off-the-shelf, pre-verified DSP cores that negate the need for designers to write their own core in VHDL or Verilog, then
build a testbench to verify the model, AccelCore matrix cores are truly the first of their kind in the industry, and they
can save customers months of RTL coding."
AccelChip was founded in 2000 and has design centers in Oregon and
APRIL 13th, 2005
Empower Technologies Corporation has entered into an agreement
with Mobile Dynamics Corporation to use technology to convert audio software to TI DSP and other integrated circuit platforms.
Empower plans to receive royalties on the resultant software audio codec from consumer electronics companies. The technology
includes active noise cancellation, acoustic reconciliation and modeling and equalization
Derek Lee, President of Mobile Dynamics concluded about
the agreement, "We're excited that Empower is putting maximum effort into releasing the first of several software kernels
that we have available. The sure success of Empower's product will aid our company's establishment as a valued provider
of software based audio enhancements for other products."
APRIL 13th, 2005
Magima Corporation, a company focused on embedded designs for the
Chinese market, has reported that it has licensed and will use the MIPS32 4Kc SMIC 0.18 micron hard IP core for a SoC chip
design for the set top and digital television markets. Jen-Chung Chou, Magima's President and CEO discussed the selection
and his company, "We established Magima in Shanghai in 1998, and we're pleased that MIPS Technologies has also
committed itself to the Chinese market with the establishment of its R&D Center here. We strongly believe that the highly
regarded MIPS architecture is the best processor solution for Chinese STB/DTV and we're energized at the prospect of working
APRIL 12th, 2005
Kings of Semiconductors Expand R&D Alliance to Eliminate
IP Design Gap
The original Crolles2 alliance between STMicroelectronics (NYSE:STM),
Philips (NYSE:PHG)(AEX:PHI) and Freescale Semiconductor (NYSE:FSL)(NYSE:FSL.B) established several years ago apparently has
gone well. The three companies have planned to extend their agreement. It was reported that the companies have entered into
a preliminary agreement to codevelop Intellectual Property (IP) cores. Although, not finalized, the agreement's goal is to
shorten the time needed to develop reusable IP cores. According to Bart De Loore, General Manager of the Alliance LIPP and
the Former General Manager of Philips Semiconductors IP ReUse Technology Group, "The preliminary understanding represents
a major step forward in overcoming the design gap -- one of the biggest challenges for the semiconductor industry. It is the
first time in the industry that a group of major semiconductor companies has agreed to share proprietary SoC IP blocks. This
move is designed to help the Alliance partners roll out complex right-first-time SoCs faster than ever before from their advanced
CMOS process technologies."
APRIL 11th, 2005
SafeNet, Inc. (NASDAQ:SFNT) has made available the National Institute of
Standards & Technology (NIST) SHA-256 Secure Hashing Algorithm to its semiconductor OEM customers as part of its
line of SafeXcel silicon Intellectual Property (IP) Core offerings.
Henk Pruim, Vice President and General Manager at SafeNet's OEM/Networking
Business Unit, indicated the cores will add significantly to the development of more advanced integrated circuits, "As companies
assess recent concerns with the security of SHA-1, SafeNet has already implemented the stronger SHA-256 algorithms into many
of our products. Companies wishing to upgrade their security for digital signatures, password verification, online transactions
and VPN systems can now do so with our networking solutions."
SafeNet, an information security company, founded over 20 years ago, offers
hardware, software and chips for security applications. Its semiconductor customers include ARM and Texas Instruments.
APRIL 8th, 2005
Elixent announced the first close of a funding round that is
expected to total $15 million at the final close. The initial investment included financial commitments from Panasonic Digital
Concepts Center, a venture capital arm of Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., Toshiba Corporation as well as 3i, GIMV
and NIF Ventures.
Mr. Yoshio Ooida, Executive Vice President, Toshiba Corporation
Semiconductor Company. commented on the investment and Toshiba's relationship with Elixent, "We've worked with Elixent
for two years now and this investment shows our ongoing commitment to the company and the system-on-chip technology we've
developed together." Mr. Dilip Sampath, Partner, Panasonic Digital Concepts Center added, "Reconfigurable technology will
play a key role in the next generation of consumer electronics. Our investment in Elixent demonstrates our high expectations
of its technology and the market."
Elixent is known for D-Fabrix, a patented reconfigurable algorithm
processing (RAP) technology, which offers lower power than other programmable technologies and is considered a competitive
cost-performance alternative to custom based designs such as standard cells.
Elixent has also just licensed its D-Fabrix, RAP technology,
D-Fabrix, to Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.. Matsushita plans to develop system-on-chips (SoCs) for advanced multimedia
and communications consumer products with the technology. Prototype chips have already been produced at Matsushita's Semiconductor
Company wafer fabrication facilities.
Katsuhiko Ueda, General Manager, Corporate System LSI Development
Division of Matsushita's Semiconductor Company offered reasons for the Elixent decision, "A platform SoC strategy is essential
to be competitive in consumer electronics. We are impressed by Elixent's technology and believe it will become the de-facto
standard for reconfigurable technology inside consumer electronics. It will certainly help to position us well for future
APRIL 6th, 2005
MIPS Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:MIPS) in apparent bid to become
the dominate core supplier to the DTV market has announced agreements with four DTV software providers. The agreements, which
revolve around a Java-enabled solution that supports the OCAP and MHP standards are with Esmertec, Skelmir, Vidiom and Zentek.
Russ Bell, Vice President of Marketing at MIPS Technologies commented on the agreements, "We're proud to be the first
in our industry to provide a global Java-based solution that is unmatched for its completeness, interoperability, and optimization
with the two major international standards. Our licensees have developed a superior range of products optimized to the industry
leading MIPS32 and MIPS64 architectures, which will allow our customers to deliver rich functionality over the Java platform.
We're also excited to see that this media functionality is moving into other consumer products, including DVD, PMP, auto entertainment
and cellular phones, that can benefit from our Java-based solutions." MIPS also noted that the company has established license
agreements with all the major suppliers of cable settop silicon products, which includes Scientific Atlanta.
Michael Malcy, VP Marketing for Vidiom Systems Corporation also
noted the significance of MIPS in the DTV market, "The industry worldwide recognizes the MIPS architecture as the de facto
standard for digital audio and video, and we're pleased to be a part of their extensive Ecosystem. The MIPS32 24K family of
cores is ideally suited for the world of digital TV, because they offer the highest performance and configurability among
licensable cores, and enable products which are both cost-effective and feature-rich."
IP CORE NEWS COLUMN
MARCH 22nd, 2005
Kilopass Technology Inc, which offers low-cost embedded IP core security-enabled
memory technology has won over Zoran Corporation. Zoran will use the memory IP in a 0.18 micron CMOS process for the design
of its integrated circuits. The design win is one of many at Kilopass that indicate the company's XPM memory technology is
the right solution and at the right price for a number of secure embedded memory applications. According to David Auld, Vice
President Technology, Zoran Corporation, "Several competing technologies were considered. The XPM memory technology was determined
to have the best combination of functionality, area, manufacturability and ease of production flow. The XPM memory has been
successfully integrated and demonstrated as functional."
One of the features of KiloPass' technology is that the data stored in
the embedded memory cannot be decrypted even if the actual IC was physically deconstructed and placed underneath a high resolution
MARCH 17th, 2005
MIPS Technologies Processor Core to Power China's Television Technology
Limited, a fabless semiconductor company based in Shanghai China has licensed MIPS Technologies, Inc., (NASDAQ:MIPS) IP core technology. The
MIPS32 4Kc SMIC.18 hard core is planned for use in digital television integrated circuits for the Chinese market. The design
win comes on the heels of MIPS opening of a R&D development center in China.
The facility, because it has been planned to support the development of SoCs at China's
large and growing base of fabless chip companies, is expected to increase MIPS revenue from China, which is oriented to consumer applications. According to Biao Zhang, CEO
at Huaya, "The MIPS architecture is well known and respected in China.
We strongly believe that it is the best processor solution for Chinese DTV. Now that MIPS Technologies has demonstrated its
commitment to the China market by opening an R&D
Center in Shanghai,
we are fully confident that, by collaborating with MIPS Technologies, HuayaMicro can deliver world-class DTV products to our
customers in a timely and cost-effective manner."
Limited (HuayaMicro) offers integrated circuit solutions for set-top boxes, portable and high definition large screen displays.
Huaya is headquartered in Shanghai and has offices in Nanjing,
Shenzhen and San Jose, CA.
The MIPS32 4Kc SMIC .18
micron hard core has is rated at 190MHz and has a die area of 3.42 square millimeters.
MARCH 17th, 2005
RF Engines Receives DFT Core Supply Contract
RF Engines Limited, a company
that offers advanced signal processing building blocks for integration into FPGA based ASICs, has disclosed that a mobile
telecommunications company has selected its mixed radix Discrete Fourier Transform as use in an FPGA based designs. RF Engines
Limited did not divulge the name of the company, but indicated it was a prestigious client. According to John Summers, Vice
President Sales and Business Development at RF Engines, "We are obviously pleased to be supplying such a prestigious client
with specialist designs, in support of its advanced technology programme, and we look forward to continuing to develop the
relationship." RF Engines is based in the United Kingdom.
MARCH 10th, 2005
StarCore's DSP Core Chosen Again, This Time by
VoIP Leader, Legerity
joins the ranks of high profile integrated circuit companies that have selected StarCore LLC's Digital Signal Processing technology.
Legerity has plans to use the DSP core for its Voice Control Processor (VCP) and line test diagnostic applications used in
its VoIP products. Legerity says it plans to use the core and associated software for both wired and wireless VoIP product
development. Additionally, Legerity sees StarCore's products as a building block for Fiber to the Premise (FTTP) chips. Shoaib
Mohammad, Director of Corporate Business Development at Legerity, indicated that StarCore technology would enable the company
to respond more quickly to its customers' evolving feature set requirements with a lower overall system cost.
Legerity has already
established itself as one of the market leaders in the VoIP market. This in part is due to the fact that Legerity has a customer
base that includes over 200 communication product manufacturers. Legerity is also very familiar with DSP technology. Over
the years, the company has shipped over 400 million DSP based integrated circuits.
MARCH 8th, 2005
Infineon VoIP Design Win May Signify a Core Trend for MIPSMIPS Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: MIPS) has won another VoIP license. This time its one of Europe's largest integrated
circuit companies, Infineon Technologies AG (FSE/NYSE: IFX). A long time partner of MIPS (since 2000), Infineon selected the
MIPS32 24Kc and the MIPS32 M4K processor cores as part of its overall VoIP product development strategy. Ulrich Huewels, VP
of System Engineering COM Access, Infineon Technologies AG indicated that MIPS' cores have already been used in number of
its VoIP solutions including IP Phones, Analog Telephone Adapters (ATA) and VoIP-enabled Gateways. Cesar Martin-Perez, Vice
President of European Operations at MIPS Technologies underscored the success by noting that 24K core licensing growth has
been faster than any other product from MIPS.
The MIPS 24K core can be optimized for speed, area or power for a 2.8mm2
core-only size, or a 0.58 mW/MHz power rating or up to 900 Dhrystone 2.1 MIPS operational performance. The MIPS core is also
well known for its record breaking Java performance.
MARCH 2, 2005
MIPS Technologies’ Core is Basis for VoIP Phones
D2 Technologies, Inc. and Alpha Networks
have together announced the availability of a low cost VoIP Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) device complete with D2’s
VoIP software. The device, which measures only 7.5 cm x 8 cm, has an RJ-11 port for attachment
to a standard telephone and a RJ-45 port for attachment to a broadband / WAN card or unit.
The companies specifically pointed out that the device was not based on a DSP chip, but on a MIP based processor chip.
With the MIPS based processor chip and D2’s vPort software, the device performs the various VoIP processing functions
such as echo cancellation, fax/modem tone detection for fax pass-through, voice
compression (G.711, G.726, G.729AB), tone detection, tone generation., voice
signaling, packetizing, jitter smoothing, three way calling, network and telephony
capability. D2 indicated that the ATA is targeted at the residential market.
MARCH 1st, 2005
MIPS Technologies Enters China as Technical Talent Migrates In
MIPS Technologies (NASDAQ:MIPS),
a provider of the MIPS microprocessor core for a variety of wide consumer electronic applications, has established a subsidiary
in China. The unit, MIPS Technologies
(Shanghai) Co., Ltd., includes an R&D
Center and marketing operations.
The representative in China, newly appointed Mr. Kin S. Lai, indicated that the
R&D center would allow local semiconductor companies to develop the most advanced semiconductor products. James Mac Hale, vice president of Asia Operations at MIPS, mentioned that the timing was right. The Beijing
2008 Olympics are expected to be a catalyst for new electronic device development in China.
where might MIPS find the talent to staff its new R&D center? Recent reports
from the State Administration of Foreign Experts Agency, via the Xinhua General News Service, indicate that about 63 percent
of foreign top technical talent in China comes from Japan, Korea and the United States. However, top level talent has been on the rise
from Commonwealth of Independent States, once known as the USSR.
The Russians, in general have doctorates, and are for the most part based in the Heilongjiang
province, in Northern China. That province is
a major immigrant point of entry into China.
FEBRUARY 26th, 2005
Gains IP License from Fabless Encryption Company
a company that is highly focused on integrated circuits for security applications selected MIPS Technologies’ 32-bit
MIPS32 4Kc processor core for its SR200 security appliance processor. Mike McGowan, director of marketing at Corrent, indicated
that the MIPS core would allow Corrent to provide its customers with a solution that was far ahead of today’s and tomorrow’s
encryption security threats. The MIPS32 is expected to result in a 25 percent increase in VPN throughput for Corrent's security
technology, which includes cryptographic library and functions for AES, RAS and Elliptic Curve Cryptography.
FEBRUARY 26th, 2005
and Cell Company Licenses LSI Logic’s DSP Core
Information Technology Co., Ltd. (CYIT), a developer of both chips and 3G handsets, has licensed LSI Logic’s ZSP500
processor core. The Digital Signal Processing (DSP) core was licensed through LSI Logic’s ZSP Product Division. CYIT plans to incorporate the core, along with ARM’s ARM926EJ core, which it
also recently licensed, into chips designed to meet the Chinese domestic 3G standard, TD-SCDMA.
George Liao, managing
director of APAC, the DSP Products Division of LSI Logic stated that the TD-SCDMA market was very important for ZSP. He also indicated that the ZSP architecture was now established as a leader in the
3G market and is used in all three CDMA based 3G standards. These include TD-SCDMA, CDMA2000 and WCDMA.
FEBRUARY 26th, 2005
ARM IP Moves
into China Card Market
Shenzhen State Micro
Technology Co., Ltd. (SMIT) has licensed ARM’s ARM7TDMI processor core. SMIT plans to incorporate that core into its
Conditional Access Module (CAM) card used in HDTV and set top box consumers products. SMIT has developed a PCMCIA CAM card
and DVB-C cable digital TV chip, which are hardware function specific as opposed to service provider specific – giving
hardware system engineers the capability to easily modify the design for different types of consumer products. Dr. Jun Tan,
president of ARM China indicated that the selection was an ideal choice for low-power, low-cost consumer applications.
SMIT is a member of
the China Detached STB and Card Standardization Organization and considered the only provider of PCMCIA CAM cards for China. SMIT is primarily focused on the development of digital television products, but has
established relationships with chip foundries and chip design houses throughout the world.
FEBRUARY 16th, 2005
Global IP Sound (GIPS), a company which offers audio intellectual
property to chip and system companies for voice and conference engine VoIP applications, announced that its Acoustic Echo
Cancellation (AEC) technology has been integrated into the Viewport AV 100, Logitech’s desktop video communications
solution. The AEC technology is used to eliminate echo caused by acoustic feedback between microphones and speakers. The AEC
includes an adaptive filter, non-linear processor, comfort noise generator and control system.
Global IP Sound’s technology, known for its capability
to maintain telco-grade voice quality, with up to a 30 percent packet loss, has been targeted at the VoIP market. Semiconductor
companies such as Infineon Technologies have integrated GIPS’ technology into its VoIP solutions. GIPS’s
other semiconductor chip customers and partners include Analog Devices,
ARM, Brecis Communications, Intel, Starcore and Texas Instruments.
FEBRUARY 15th, 2005
a company which has partnered with numerous semiconductor companies, reported that its software, which enables the operation
of multimedia phones, was embedded into over 17 million phones and over 60 handset models in 2004.
More Information - Specify Company, Product, Etc
FEBRUARY 15th, 2005
a VoIP Application
StarCore LLC, which has recently reported
a number of new design wins, one with Skyworks, has just announced it will supply its DSP core technology to Acoustic Technologies,
Inc. The company will use the technology in a number of its newer products. These include a line of speakerphones, which feature
echo cancellation and noise reduction. Applications for the speakerphones include VoIP desktop speakerphones, WiFi phones,
cordless speakerphones and Bluetooth hands-free devices. Starcore products are noted for a low power rating of 0.17 mW/MHz.
Acoustic Technologies produces semiconductors and software products for the telecommunications market.
More Information - Specify Company, Product, Etc.
FEBRUARY 15th, 2005
Rambus Inc. and
NEC Electronics Corp. announced that NEC Electronics has licensed Rambus RaSer backplane serial interlink interface for use
in its ASIC chip products. Tetsuo Yoshino, vice president of the 1st Systems Operations Unit at NEC Electronics Corporation
stated that the IP core license would help its customers reduce their design time. Kevin Donnelly, vice president of the Logic
Interface Division at Rambus believes that the backplane technology will be an essential element in keeping designs under
budget. The backplane core features a Decision Feedback Equalizer (DFE) to compensate for changes in the humidity and temperature.
Request More Information -
Specify Company, Product, Etc.
FEBRUARY 15, 2005
Sonaptic Limited announced at DEMO@15 its latest 3D Audio Engine.
The technology, available in either chip or software format, enables mobile devices to deliver high quality 3D surround sound
with a memory requirement of just 20 KB. The technology is expected not only to give a wide host handheld devices, high-quality
sound, but will also give rise to a whole new range of miniaturized high quality-sound systems.
A number of major electronic consumer manufacturers have already selected
Sonaptic’s technology. These include NEC, Fujitsu and Mitsubishi Electric Company for the N901iC, F901iC and D901i 3G
FOMA phones. Additionally, the technology can be licensed in either chip or software form two other Japan based companies,
Rohm and Yamaha. Yamaha is one of the most respected names in musical instrument technology.
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FEBRUARY 15th, 2005
and ARM announced that Sequans would utilize the ARM processor core in its WiMAX chip sets, expected to be introduced in 2005.
Sequans has licensed the In addition to the ARM926EJ-S processor and the VFP9-S(TM) vector floating-point coprocessor.
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Sonic Network’s IP in Analog Device's SoftFone Chipsets
Network, Inc. (Sonic) has announced that its Embedded Audio Synthesis technology has been integrated into Analog Device’s
SoftFone chipsets used in cellular phones. Critical to the selection of Sonic’s MIDI ringtone synthesis technology, was its high quality and low cost. Analog Devices needed
a product that would provide the high quality of stand-alone ringtone chips, but a lower price. Sonic Networks technology,
which is well known for its quality, met both of Analog Device’s requirements. Analog Devices is one of the largest
producers of mixed signal integrated circuits in the world.
FEBRUARY 10th, 2005
TTP’s IP Core to From Basis for NEC’s Cellular Chips
Communications plc. and NEC Electronics Corporation have entered into an agreement to develop dual-mode chipsets for the 3G/2G
cell phone market. NEC Electronics has a significant position in the WCMDA chipset
FEBRUARY 9th, 2005
Wins Two in Europe
International has reported that Infineon Technologies and Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe, two existing customers, have taken
new licenses. Infineon Technologies has licensed the ARC XY Advanced DSP technology for use in its next-generation wireline
access products. And Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe has licensed the ARC 700
configurable processor core. Fujitsu will use its core license in integrated circuits targeted for consumer applications. Infineon and Fujitsu have been ARC customers since 2001.
FEBRUARY 9th, 2005
Mosys’s Revenue Takes Heart-Stopping Dive
Monolithic System Technology, Inc., (also known as Mosys), which was one of the first companies to come
out with the one-transistor SRAM cell marketing concept, saw its latest quarterly revenue fall dramatically. Total revenue in its fiscal fourth quarter was $1.2 million compared to $3.4 million a year ago. License
revenue dropped dramatically in its fourth quarter, which ended December 31, 2004, to $0.1 million from $1.9 million for the same period a year ago.
So is the problem temporary
or permanent? It’s always hard if not impossible to tell. Mosys is in the high-growth IP core market. But a number of
companies have come out with new and very different one-transistor SRAM cells.
FEBRUARY 9th, 2005
Sharp Microelectronics Reports Over 20 Customers for its
ARM Based SoCs
Microelectronics of the Americas announced that is has seen an increase in shipments
of its new line of ARM720T(TM) 16/32- and 32-bit System-on-Chips. Sharp attributes
the shipment increase to customer adoption of the BlueStreak platform. Since the 15/32-bit and 32-bit LH9524 SoCs were beta
released in August of 2004, more than 20 customers have signed on to develop systems. The
chips, which have the circuitry necessary to interface to Sharp’s TFT display panels, have been targeted for consumer
electronic applications. Sharp lists smart toys, medical and industrial devices, GPS and tracking systems as potential markets.
FEBRUARY 8TH, 2005
ATI Technologies Acquires Terayon’s Silicon IP
ATI Technologies, Inc.
has entered into an agreement with Terayon Communication Systems, Inc. to acquire its cable modem silicon intellectual property
(IP). As part of the agreement, Terayon plans to transfer 25 of its employees to ATI.
The transaction is expected to cost ATI $14 million in cash. Only $6.95 million will be paid immediately, the remainder
will be paid once certain milestones are obtained.
One of the apparent reasons
for the acquisition is ATI’s desire to keep its hold on the HDTV market, which it has recently captured. According to
ATI, it has shipped over 5 million digital television chips in 2004 alone. Digital television customers, which ATI lists include
ALPS, Changhong, Funai, Hisense, Hitachi, JVC, Kreatel, Mitsubishi, Pace, Philips, Panasonic, Samsung, Sanyo, Sharp, Scientific Atlanta, Sony, Thomson, Toshiba,
ATI goes on to state that
is ATI's THEATER and NXT demodulators
have 85% market share and its XILLEON MPEG decoders have 40% market share in the ATSC/DCR Markets. One of the reasons for the acquisition is that ATI wants to keep its resources focused on its core video
and home access solutions businesses. ATI didn’t want to lose that focus through an internal effort to design its own cable modem chips. Terayon, which is well-known in the cable modem market, has sold over three million of its TJ 700x series
FEBRUARY 7, 2005
Imagination Technologies Retains Access to Texas Instruments
Cellular Market Share
announced that Texas Instruments (TI) has licensed Imagination's PowerVR MBX Lite graphics core. The IP core is planned for
used in TI’s OMAP 2 processor architecture, extensively used in cellular hand sets.
Imagination’s other core, the PowerVR MBX core had previously used in TI’s OMAP 2 architecture. TI is considered
one of the largest cell phone chip manufacturers in the world.
FEBRUARY 7, 2005
M2000 Releases Record Breaking FPGA IP Cores
M2000, based in France,
has announced that its FlexEOS embedded FPGA IP cores (macros) are available now. The company reports that these FPGA cores,
which work with 90 nanometer technology, have a density of 1,000 reprogrammable Look-Up Tables (LUTs) per square millimeter,
98,304 LUTs and a speed rating of 2.7 GHz. The cores, besides through M2000 headquarters
in France, are also available through Spinnaker in Japan, Mindcrea OY in the United Kingdom
and Scandinavia, and very soon through a new Silicon Valley sales office.
FEBRUARY 3, 2005
Mathematical IP Design Flow Reduces Nvidia’s Silicon Costs
Arithmatica, Inc., the silicon
math company, reported that it has integrated a front-end design flow for joint customers of Arithmatica and Cadence Design
Systems, Inc. NVidia, one of the world’s largest fabless graphic processor
companies, used the CellMath IP and design flow to obtain significant chip area reduction of floating point blocks. Arithmatica is an IP core company that is focused on the optimization of IP cores which are inherently
FEBRUARY 2, 2005
IP Core Deals Signal Lower Cell Phone Costs
Starcore LLC’s communications
IP core technology was selected by Skyworks Solutions for that company’s GPRS, EDGE and WCDMA baseband platforms. Starcore
has also won over Freescale Semiconductor. Freescale Semiconductor has used the technology, along with ARM’s IP core
technology, to build its Mobile Extreme Convergence architecture. That platform appears to be the thundered response to Texas Instruments recent introduction of its single chip cellular phone solution.
The Mobile Extreme architecture however can alls be used to cost –effectively convert any electronic device into a cellular
phone. Both Texas Instruments and Freescale’s solutions are expected to
reduce the cost of cellular phones by as much as 50 percent.
Freescale has currently sampled the product to Motorola, the company that is was spun out from. Motorola, which has
significant operations in cellular phones, has been one of Freescale’s major cellular chip customers. Motorola and Agere
Systems spawned Starcore in 2001. Infineon later joined the team, to form the new Starcore in 2002. Starcore was founded to
develop DSP IP core and software solutions for the communications market
FEBRUARY 1, 2005
Synopsys Wins Growing IP Core Account
Chipidea, based in Portugal,
has selected Synopsys’ Galaxy Design and Discovery Verification platforms. Chipidea is expected to use the design tools
for the development of its mixed signal and analog IP cores. Chipidea employs over 160 people and has plans to have over 250
employees in the year 2006.
JANUARY 31, 2005
Early Indicators Suggest IP Cores to Lead 2005 Technology Markets
ARM Holdings expects 2005 to
be growth year despite the fact that semiconductor industry revenues are expected to be flat or down in the first half of
2005. ARM reports that its backlog entering 2005 is healthy at its ARM and Artisan units and there is momentum in royalty
revenues. Because of these factors, ARM sees the prospect of at least 20 percent gain in revenue in 2005.
JANUARY 31st, 2005
MatrixOne’s Software Grows With IP Market and IC
MatrixOne reported increased
its software license revenue 64 percent in its second fiscal quarter. The company’s total revenue for the quarter reached
$35.1 million. MatrixOne offers collaborative product lifecycle management solutions, which includes Intellectual Property
(IP) core reuses design management software (Synchronicity) and now MatrixOne Materials
Compliance Center software,
a software package intended to help technology companies navigate through a complex array of environmental regulations and
laws imposed in different continents and countries. MatrixOne names a few of
these directives. These include European End of Life Vehicle Directive (ELV), Restrictions on the use of certain Hazardous
Substances Directive (ROHS) and Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE).
MatrixOne's design management,
IP and collaboration customers include a number of semiconductor and electronic companies: BAE Systems North America, Cypress
Semiconductor, Intel, LSI Logic, Motorola, Nortel Networks, Philips Semiconductor, PMC-Sierra, Inc., Sony Ericsson Mobile
Communications STMicroelectronics, QUALCOMM and Toshiba Corporation.
JANUARY 31, 2005
Over 1 Billion Chips Shipped With ARM IP In 2004
The company also reported that for its fiscal year, ended December 31st, 2004, over 1 billion
chips shipped in 2004 with ARM IP cores. Precisely speaking, 1,272 billion units shipped in 2004 compared to 782 million units
in 2003. The company reported that of the 1.28 billion units shipped, 868 million went into wireless devices in 2004. ARM
points to the fact that non-wireless shipments tripled in 2004 to 405 million units from 119 million units in 2003. ARM indicates
that this is a sign that it has successfully penetrated new markets.
This, with the help of ARM’s other divisions, increased total annual revenue 19 percent to GBP152.9
million for 2004 from GBP128.1 in 2003.
ARM gained 347 employees with
the acquisition of Artisan. With the Artisan acquisition, ARM has nearly 1200 employees. Now ARM has 546 employees in the
454 employees in the United States, 79 in Continental Europe, 51 in India and 41 in the Asia Pacific countries.
JANUARY 27th, 2005
Asustek To Design Chips With MIPS Cores
ASMedia Technology, the chip design unit of Asustek Computer Inc, as
a result of a license agreement between MIPS Technologies and Asustek, plans to design digital consumer SoC chips based on
MIPS’ 32 4KEc and 4KEp IP cores.
JANUARY 26th, 2005
Robert Bosch GmbH Licenses IP Core
Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe and Fujitsu Microelectronics America licensed from Robert Bosch GmbH its FlexRay communication
controller IP core technology. The cores are expected to be used in the development of chips for the automotive market.
JANUARY 26th, 2005
Kilopass Gets Award for Memory With 1.5 Transistor Cell
EDN magazine selected Kilopass Technology’s nonvolatile memory chip technology as a finalist for its
END Innovation Award in the Intellectual Property category. Kilopass offers embedded memory cores, which can be built with
a standard CMOS process and uses only 1.5 transistors per memory bit on average. This has given design engineers a way to
embed large amounts of memory on logic chips without incurring the large costs associated with traditional embedded memory
technology. Kilopass’ embedded memory cells are used to replace on-chip masked ROMS and flash and EEPROM
memory that has in the past been placed off chip.
JANUARY 24th, 2005
Innovative Silicon Inc. May
Disrupt Memory and Process Market Shares
Innovative Silicon, based in Switzerland,
announced today that it has taped-out its Z-RAM embedded memory technology for embedded memory applications with a 90 nm process.
The technology may become the next memory standard. This is because Innovative's
memory cell requires one transistor and doesn’t require a capacitor - which results in a major reduction in memory
cell size and memory chip size.
One of the secrets to the technology, according
to the company, is that the design is based on the silicon-on-insulator (SOI) process technology. Specifically, the design takes advantage of a SOI parasitic effect related to the Floating Body or Body
Charging effect. The design uses a circuit to take advantage
of the Floating Body effect to read and write data – instead of a capacitor.
impact of the technology may be very great. The area required to implement embedded memory with the SOI capless cell
is about half of traditional designs. Another benefit, according to the company, is that the embedded SOI capless DRAM
process requires less mask steps than the standard embedded DRAM process. This would make embedded DRAM
SoCs as cost-effective as tradtional logic SoC chips. Becasue the process is the SOI process, DRAMs built with
SOI devices result in faster and lower power memory chips than those built with standard processes.
SOI wafer suppliers may
also see gold when they hear the news. The memory chip market is a major segment of the $200 billion IC market. Furthermore,
the SoC market, which requires low-cost, and area optimized embedded memory, is sizable and growing. Add to this IBM’s
and Advanced Micro Devices' SOI plans for their next generation microprocessors - and one might find a genuine SOI shortage.
JANUARY 20th, 2005
Moschip Semiconductor and ESS Technology Ink Agreement
MosChip Semiconductor Technology Ltd. entered into four-year agreement
with ESS Technology to develop IP cores. Moschip is a public fables company based in India, and ESS Technology, a public fables
company based in the United States, with operations in DVD and camera chip technology.
JANUARY 18th, 2005
Computer Systems Company Enters IP Core Market
Mercury Computer Systems, Inc., known more for its computer systems,
has released its serial RapidIO silicon IP core.
JANUARY 18th, 2005
MIPS Wins Set Top Box IP Core License
MIPS Technologies has secured a license for its 24Kc processor core
form Atlantic-Scientific. The core is expected to be used in the company’s set top products, a market that Atlantic
JANUARY 17th, 2005
Reconfigurability key to Transilica’s IP Core License Agreements
Tensilica appears to be on the right path with its reconfigurable
processor. NVidia, one of the largest fabless companies in the world, just licensed its XP core processor. But that’s
not all. LG Electronics, one of the larger cell phone companies in Korea, also licensed the technology. This mobile phone
is no ordinary mobile phone however. LG’s phone can receive digital broadcast signals. This gives the customer the capability
to watch TV and make phone calls at the same time. The phone is compatible with the Terrestrial Digital-Multimedia-Broadcast
or T-DMB standard.