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Leveraging IP for market ownership

Posted: 08 Feb 2007     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Vision Summit  IP  ISA  design service  SoC 

Daniel Weed
Dan Weed: To be a viable IP provider, you got to stand behind your product.
If an Indian company wants to get involved with the intellectual property (IP) business, then there are models to make that successful. This was a key message that Daniel Weed, Tensilica's senior vice president customer engineering, brought home to a full capacity audience, in his speech at the ISA Vision Summit 2007. The speech was part of the session, "Leveraging IP: Intellectual property ownership as the driver of innovation."

Speaking to EE Times-India shortly after the session, Weed said that India needs to develop and leverage IP, in order to move its present design services model up the design chain. He indicated that Indian 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 IP, 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 IP, as well as around a design problem, and provide a time-to-market advantage to their customers," Weed said.

Speaking in the global market context, Weed said that in future, semiconductor design houses will gravitate strongly towards increasing the usage of IP blocks in their designs. The share of IP in SoCs and electronic systems will increase, chiefly 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 5megapixel camera in a handheld mobile application, by adopting a design strategy based on IP. And, I do not think there are more than 30 people in that company," shared Weed.

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

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

"To be a viable IP provider, you got 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 that is well engineered. But if you do not have all the four views—physical, 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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