TriMedia Technologies Inc. has become the latest casualty in the licensable DSP IP market, with the former Philips Semiconductor spin-out folding operations back into the parent organization earlier this month.
Chris Day, senior director of marketing for media processors at Philips in Sunnyvale, Calif., said customer preference for full system-level solutions instead of cores forced the decision to close Milpitas, Calif.-based TriMedia.
TriMedia offered for license a high-performance DSP architecture that was optimized for multimedia applications. The failure of TriMedia follows similar problems in the past year by other DSP IP companies, including Chameleon Systems Inc. and BOPS Inc., both of which have gone out of business.
Difficulties for TriMedia and others stem from an over-abundance of licensable DSP IP companies formed in the past five years, and from a lack of potential sockets for the high-end solutions, analysts said.
"The IP core business is a tough business, and it's really tough at the high end," said Jeff Bier, an analyst with Berkeley Design Technology Inc., Berkeley, Calif. "It appears there is a fundamental mismatch between the IP core licensing business and a high end, high performance architecture."
TriMedia had licensed its architecture to Philips, Sony, National Semiconductor, and 2Wire, and Philips will continue to support the licensees and seek new licensing opportunities, Day said, although the greatest demand for TriMedia is likely to be as part of a system-level solution.