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India needs to develop IPs to move up design chain, says Tensilica exec

Posted: 09 Feb 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:ISA Vision Summit?

If an Indian company wants to get involved with the intellectual property (IP) business, then there are models to make that successful, said Daniel Weed, Tensilica's senior vice president for customer engineering, during his speech at the recent ISA Vision Summit 2007 in Hyderabad.

Shortly after the sessionentitled 'Leveraging IP: Intellectual property ownership as the driver of innovation'Weed shared with EE Times-India that India needs to develop and leverage IPs to move its present design services model up the design chain. He shared that local semiconductor design companies could adapt a graduated approach to do that.

For instance, design services houses can partner with high quality IP providers, understand the delivery mechanisms, and experience first hand the time-to-market pressures that customers face in the market environment, prior to developing IP themselves.

"Some of the design services houses that we work with are very good at working with our IPs, and they even know how to accelerate it out to the market quicker than before. They are finding that if they partner with a good IP provider, they can in fact develop a differentiation that they can offer too, in the marketplace. They can wrap themselves around those IPs, as well as around a design problem, and provide a time-to-market advantage to their customers," Weed said.

Speaking within the global market context, Weed forecasted that in future, semiconductor design houses will gravitate strongly towards increasing the usage of IP blocks in their designs. The share of IPs in SoCs and electronic systems will increase, mainly as designers seek to address time-to-market pressures.

"We have seen one of our customers achieve a time-to-market of under-five months, for a 5Mpixel camera for a handheld mobile application, by adopting a design strategy based on IPs. And I do not think there are more than 30 people in that company," Weed said.

Maturity of IP
The usage of IPs has matured over the years. Weed pointed out that design houses are able to see the value of IPs as they could deploy it quickly and it worked right the first time. "You can take it up and down the scaleit could be a high-end implementation, where you need something that is truly repeatable, or something that has a different dimension to it."

However, an IP provider will need to invest considerable care and attention to achieve a high standard of quality in their products, to mitigate the risk of losing credibility in the market.

"To be a viable IP provider, you have to stand behind your product. A lot of times the quality of the IP is in fact the quality of the things wrapped around the IP. You can develop an IP of high quality and is well engineered. But if you do not have all the four viewsphysical, electric, noise and simulation, it will appear to be very low quality and could lead to credibility issues," Weed pointed out.

- Krishnan Sivaramakrishnan
EE Times-India

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