Good question. I should have stated that we believe traditional SPICE will continue to be the primary simulator for verifying “simple blocks,” where we define simple blocks as those with <1K elements or <1-hour runtime. Above those levels, Analog FastSPICE (AFS) is consistently 5x-10x faster. Below those levels, it may not be.
The primary reason we believe traditional SPICE will be the primary simulator for simple blocks is value. Analog FastSPICE may not provide 5x the speedup on simple blocks and the value of any speedup is generally much less for short runs (e.g., cutting 5 days to 1 day is generally much more valuable than cutting 5 min to 1 min – even if there are a lot of 5 min iterations). Pricing is certainly part of that value equation. AFS pricing is more aligned with digital fastSPICE simulators than with traditional SPICE simulators because of the value it provides. Given that companies have very large investments in traditional SPICE simulators, those tools will be around for years regardless Analog FastSPICE or any other next-generation simulator. That investment will migrate to the place where it provides the highest relative value which is on simple circuits.
Berkeley Design Automation