SANTA CLARA, Calif.Programmable-logic vendor QuickLogic Corp. will be relesasing its newest FPGA family within a few months, chief executive Thomas Hart said. In a talk with analysts and reporters, Hart said the new architecture will be unveiled sometime in the second quarter of this year, although he declined to give details. The parts will be Quicklogic's first new family since the pASIC 3 line came out in 1997.
Hart also said that QuickLogic's manufacturing agreement with Cypress Semiconductor Corp., whereby parts are manufactured at Cypress' Round Rock, Texas, facility, has been extended to 2005. Cypress had been an investor in QuickLogic but sold its stake during QuickLogic's October 1999 initial public offering.
Most of Hart's presentation focused on embedded standard products, QuickLogic's term for hybrid parts that connect an FPGA with standard-cell fixed logic. Principal examples so far hav e included QuickPCI, which incorporates a 64-bit, 66-MHz PCI controller, and QuickDSP, which is intended to be a coprocessor to a DSP and is particularly good with multiply-accumulate functions, Hart said.
QuickLogic holds an advantage over the competition in this area due to its interconnect architecture, Hart said. Developed by the company's founders, the Programmable Metal ViaLink structure provides near-ASIC performance but consume less die size than typical SRAM-based interconnect.
Every programmable-logic vendor is pursuing a concept along the lines of ESPs, but the idea is particularly important to QuickLogic because it presents a "Trojan horse" opportunity to recruit new customers without going directly against Altera Corp. or Xilinx Inc., Hart said.
"The ESP is getting us into places we couldn't get arrested before," Hart said. Cisco Systems Inc. and Texas Instruments Inc. were two examples he offered, where the comp anies needed high-speed programmable parts and turned to QuickLogic.