IBM is partnering with silicon design platform provider SiCAD to offer a cloud-based high performance services for electronic design automation (EDA) which the companies said can be used to design silicon for smartphones, wearables and Internet of Things devices.
The IBM Electronics Design Automation (EDA)-based tools will be delivered via SoftLayer infrastructure on a PAYG basis and provide on-demand access to silicon design tools.
IBM will initially deliver three key services: IBM Library Characterization, to create abstract electrical and timing models for chip designs; IBM Logic Verification, to simulate electronic systems and design languages; and IBM Spice, an electronic circuit simulator used to check design integrity and probe chip behaviour.
The company said deployment clusters will be segregated (both compute and networking), so clients won’t share any infrastructure.
“The proliferation of smartphones, tablets, wearable devices and Internet of Things (IoT) products has been the primary driver for increased demand for semiconductor chips. Companies are under pressure to design electronic systems faster, better and cheaper,” said Jai Iyer, founder and chief executive of SiCAD. “A time-based usage model on a need basis makes sense for this industry and will spur innovation in the industry while lowering capital and operations expenses.”
The companies said the partnership will help enable startups designing silicon for IoT applications, a venture not only increasingly attractive because of the explosion of activity around IoT and the need for purpose-built chip architectures but the sheer size of the silicon land-grab in the sector.