Diya Soubra, ARM
DSP-FPGA.com (September 9th, 2014)
The system-on-chip (SoC) is now a part of almost all electronic systems. As an integrated circuit (IC) that pulls together microprocessor cores, systems logic, and I/O functions, the SoC enables a wide range of product designs and is driving new markets such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and the cyber-physical systems that now underpin many industrial and automotive applications.
Traditionally, integration focused on digital functions. That is changing rapidly. According to market analyst IBS, by 2020 more than 70 percent of non-memory semiconductors will be mixed-signal designs, incorporating both digital logic and analogue processing and I/O circuitry.
The opportunities offered by SoCs – many of them provided as off-the-shelf components – are helping to drive the market for custom IC designs. Market analyst firm Semico expect the number of application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) design starts to grow by 7.1 percent 2014, following a growth of 5.9 percent from 2013, much of it driven by mixed-signal designs. The number of first-time SoC rather than derivative product design efforts alone will rise 5.2 percent this year, according to the company.
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