TSMC’s IP moves stir up concern among providers

TSMC is broadening it’s portfolio of internally developed IPs and 3rd party IPs. It had started a program called IP-9000, later renamed to Active Accuracy Assurance Program, to qualify various IPs in its foundries. The objective was to expedite the design time with silicon proven 3rd party IPs.

With shorter design cycle time and with IPs becoming mandatory blocks in a design, the need for silicon proven IPs is not just desirable but also essential. Having a broad and quality IP portfolio is a big asset. If TSMC is getting into the ASIC like biz model, then indeed it is worrisome for the 3rd party IP vendors; especially the smaller ones who aspire to gain market share on the basis of their expertise in niche areas. The field gets all the more “unlevel”. But then it is a competitive world and TSMC would be leveraging on its resources and market reach.

A point to be noted is that, does this mean the resurrection of ASICs - often ranted about as dead ??

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