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Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena is a contributing editor for EDACafe.Com

CAST: feeling the DesignCon vibe

January 30th, 2013 by Peggy Aycinena

DesignCon’s unfolding in Silicon Valley all week. Among the many companies exhibiting there, IP provider CAST and its IP core development partner Beyond Semiconductor are enjoying a particularly excellent experience. When I stopped in at CAST’s booth on the DesignCon floor for a brief chat with company CEO Hal Barbour this afternoon, he told me his company’s revenue numbers for January 2013 alone are set to outpace CAST’s total first-quarter revenues from 2010, 2011, or 2012.

Given the energy and attendance swirling about us at DesignCon, Barbour’s impressive financials were not a complete surprise – Silicon Valley is back – but a revitalized revenue stream is not the only reason CAST is enjoying a lot of traffic in their booth this week. More it’s because CAST and Beyond Semiconductor have chosen this time and place to announce yet another member of their family of 32-bit processor cores targeting embedded applications.

Per the press release:  “The BA25 Advanced Application Processor is designed … as the main processor for systems running general-purpose operating systems like Linux or Android. The new processor operates at high frequencies (more than 800 MHz and 1,360 DMIPS in 65 nm LP), and maintains a smaller silicon footprint than most competing application processors.”

Standing in his DesignCon booth, Hal told me, “We’ve been working with Beyond Semiconductor for over 2 years now. Their business is primarily designing SoCs around their processor technology. CAST has worked with them to make that technology shrink-wrapped and applicable to deeply embedded systems.

“As a result, the BA2x products we’re now providing are great for our customers, and our customers’ customers. Great for people for whom the brand name inside the chip is not important, but for whom quality, cost, and no-or-low royalties is important.

“We’re providing these folks with 32-bit cores that are of the highest quality, and providing the highest quality support to go with it. CAST is leveraging its expertise and Beyond Semiconductor’s product development to meet the 32-bit processor needs of a huge number of customers.”

I asked Hal why make the announcement this week in the Santa Clara Convention Center.

He said, “DesignCon’s a great place to announce our newest offering. Many of our customers are here, and our partners. CAST is based on the East Coast, so we love being here on the West Coast checking in with everybody. And from where I’m standing, things are looking very good here!”


More from the Press Release …

“The BA25 supports out-of-order completion and advanced branch prediction, and uses a seven-stage pipelined architecture with optional two-level caches and memory management functions. It joins the BA22 processor core, which has versions targeted at embedded systems and basic application processors.

“Both processors support the BA2 instruction set architecture (ISA), providing efficient operation and extreme code density for greater system-wide power savings. Core packages include the Eclipse- and GNU-based BeyondStudio toolset to facilitate software development. Complete evaluation and development hardware kits are available.”


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