Gary Smith EDA: PCB ‘a door to the future’ but ‘slow take-off’ for ESL

By Paul Dempsey |  No Comments  |  Posted: December 18, 2014
Topics/Categories: Blog Topics, Commentary, Design to Silicon, Digital/analog implementation, Blog - EDA, - ESL/SystemC, GDSII, Blog - PCB, - RTL, Tested Component to System, Verification  |  Tags: , , , , , ,  | Organizations:

The 2014 Market Share Summary from Gary Smith EDA (GSEDA) points to renewed growth in the PCB design tool market as design specifications increasingly adopt forms of multi-die integration as well as individual SoCs.

In its Executive Summary, EDA’s leading research group observes that the familiar and mature PCB flow has become “the entry point to the wonderful new world of System Design Automation (SDA). PCB itself is being teamed-up with multi-chip module design; 2D, 2½D design, and 3D design; MEMS design and mechanical design.”

This reflects a change in how tool purchases now need to be analyzed on at least two levels: the first remains based on flow segmentation; the second addresses broader system objectives such as the target application market or broader design challenge (e.g., analog).

“Systems design methodology, and business requirements, are developed in the vertical, industry markets. There is no one systems market,” the summary says. As a result, GSEDA says that it now plans to follow up its flow-based market overview with a specific ‘second-cut’ system level report.

GSEDA raises some concern about the ESL market. A long time coming, ESL began to see widespread adoption in 2011 and the first full ESL flow became available in 2013. But since then there has been a “slow take-off”.

IC CAD implementation techniques are moving forward briskly, largely driven by the requirements of moving to finFET. But with each successive process node now appearing to require significant innovation, this could greatly increase the demands on EDA vendors. Traditionally, the industry has assumed that nodes will alternate between one that introduces a major technology introductions and one that sees these new technologies mature.

“If [a trend toward major innovation at every node holds] true, that means the EDA vendors just had their innovation cycle cut in half,” the summary says.

RTL continues to grow well although some sub-sections are slowing down as they reach maturity and/or are superseded by new tool strategies.

Availablity for EDA report

The report’s Executive Summary is free to download. The more detailed master report and others covering specific tool segments are also now available for purchase from the GSEDA website. Pricing is as follows:

  • 2014 Market Trends: Complete ($11,000)
  • 2014 Market Trends: Forecast ($2,000)
  • ESL Market Trends 2014 ($2,000)
  • RTL and Below Market Trends 2014 ($3,000)
  • IC CAD Market Trends 2014 ($2,000)
  • PCB Market Trends 2014 ($2,000)

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