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February - 2008 - issue > Company Spotlight
Meeting-the-SoC-challenges-with-diligence
Jayakishore Bayadi
Thursday, January 31, 2008
With the wealth of experience over two decades each, two entrepreneurs from Silicon Valley Ram Reddy and Dayakar Reddy returned to their homeland Hyderabad and launched the first ever one hundred percent fabless Indian semiconductor company. Their pioneering mission was to invest their technical know-how among the young Indian talent and develop semiconductor solutions in a most cost-effective way.

“Our mission is to deliver high-quality technology solutions that enable companies to meet their business goals more effectively and in a timely manner. It’s a commitment to customer satisfaction that has been a part of MosChip’s mission since day one,” says Bhanu Nanduri, Chief Operating Officer of MosChip Semiconductor.

MosChip has been continuously and successfully helping their customer base and market segments to increase their competitive advantage by delivering business solutions to specific vertical markets. We ensure that our customer base achieves its tactical and strategic business goals by providing technology solutions to reduce costs, decrease cycle times, and seamlessly integrate our products in the customers’ applications, adds Nanduri.

Since the inception of the company, MosChip has introduced four key product families to ensure the growth of their customer base: Network Appliance Processor products, Network Co-Processor products, USB, and PCI connectivity products. Connectivity and embedded applications are two targeted verticals that MosChip has been addressing with these product families, such as Industrial PC, USB sever, Printer server, NAS server, PoS, Digital Signage, Docking Stations, Security, and many other consumer and enterprise applications.

Strategy
MosChip’s strategic goal is to provide customers with a complete package comprising of silicon and systems. The differentiating factor that MosChip takes pride in is their systems solutions, not just as an IC vendor. Both the areas of connectivity and highly integrated SoC require enormous amount of technical support and know-how, from ICs to systems to software and tools; most definitely, MosChip brings the total solution to their vendors.

MosChip attacks each vertical with customers and market requirements in mind, not necessarily cutting edge process technology as other SoC competitors might be engaged in. Process and other technologies are used as per requirements and only if it makes sense. The cost and complexity are two key considerations for such implementation.

“MosChip believes that product implementation, support and consumer engagement, and execution are our key differentiating factors over others rather than process technology alone,” reckons Nanduri.

However, MosChip has products in production implemented in 0.13 micron, 0.18 microns, 0.35 microns, and 0.5 microns. Nanduri states,, “Finer geometries can be used only if a genuine need arises. It is determined by the complexity of the device. It depends on integration, gate count, and die size of the chip. In Pad limited designs finer geometries do not provide any die size advantage and cost. However, in gate limited designs fine pitch geometry can give advantages of low power, cost savings, and die size benifits.”

Challenges
SoC (System on Chip) design creates tremendous design challenges not only to ASIC design but also other collateral challenges. The range of IC design challenges covers deep sub-micron, IP integration, multiple voltage, power consumption, verification, and many others, but the system level implementation and software issues impact customers the most, directly with respect to maintaining their competitive edge and marketing window.

In this competitive environment of time-to-market and systems cost, MosChip’s Network Appliance Processors SoC family has balanced the key features for multiple vertical market segments. This proven approach has alleviated the challenges of shortened design cycle, reduced systems integration risks, and speeds up time-to-market. This innovative strategy has successfully helped many in realizing ‘silicon to systems’ in record time.

In addition to the efficient implementation of the ICs, MosChip works diligently with its customer base to define the chip level architecture and the system level implementations. MosChip has built one of the most powerful hardware and software support groups in the industry.

“The emergence of SoC technology has brought a plethora of embedded opportunities to address today’s multiple market segments; at the same time, it has introduced a spectrum of design challenges,” notes Samir Sanyal, Applications and Marketing Manager, MosChip.
“In this competitive environment of time-to-market and lower systems cost, MosChip has taken the Franchisable Embedded Platform (FEP) approach to alleviate the challenges of shorter design cycles with a new family of products,” he adds.

As an example, the Network Appliance Processor family is offered with a comprehensive suite of hardware and software components and complete designs. One can very easily utilize these designs as a base platform and spin their applications with modular boards. Basically, franchise the base design across the multiple verticals. MosChip’s MCS8140 Network Appliance Processor evaluation platform is used for USB server, Printer Server, NAS Server, and PoS Applications.

Strength
“One of our primary goals is to stand above the competition by providing our customers with exceptional systems design services in both hardware design and software. We take pride of our unparalleled customer support by leveraging our expertise. We are looking for long-term success by understanding customers’ needs and connect with them,” claims Nanduri.

Today, MosChip is able to design end to end solutions — right from conceptualizing the design to production by studying the market and surveying the customers’ needs. After refining the market study and customers needs, the product features are finalized with the best possible technology. As the product is introduced in the market, the company critically relies on its robust system design strength and software capabilities to enable quick adoption in the market and realize revenues quickly.

MosChip’s engineering facility in Hyderabad has one of the best collections of engineering talent in India. The facility has more than 100 hardware and software engineers with capabilities in architecting, designing, debugging, and testing highly complicated Integrated Circuits. MosChip products are fabricated and manufactured at their partners’ facilities in Japan, China, and Taiwan. The worldwide customers are handled through their U.S. office in Santa Clara, California. MosChip employs a team of experienced channel partners worldwide that represents and drives the MosChip business.

Next Generation Outlook
Moschip’s wide customer base includes NCR, IBM, Toshiba, Panasonic, Sunrich technology and Speed Dragon to name a few. They are constantly aligning their product family with their customers’ and adding products in their portfolio for all possible verticals.

“Market is very dynamic now,” says Bhanu. “Because of the many applications in the market, it’s becoming most important to roll out products that meet the various requirements.”

“Our mission is to become a market leader by consistently exceeding our Customer’s expectations and providing them with best of the breed technology solutions.”

Moschip is a customer-driven company; all product lines are developed with customers and applications in mind. Most definitely, Moschip has the abilities to bring products to market in record time and win customer acceptance.
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