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Chip Design Authors: Jnan Dash, Jason Bloomberg, Trevor Bradley, David Strom

Related Topics: CEOs in Technology, Virtualization Magazine, Consumer Electronics, Chip Design, Telecom Innovation, Entrepreneurs and Innovators, CES 2010 on Ulitzer

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Marseille Reinvents Fabless Semiconductor Development, Unveils Virtual Tape-Out Methodology

In an effort to meet the challenges that many silicon design companies face such as the high cost of development, hit-or-miss market competitiveness, and rapid time to market with advanced technologies, Marseille Networks today unveiled its Virtual Tape-Out methodology that uses virtualization for prototyping a chip’s design in the end consumer device prior to manufacture.

A major step forward for the semiconductor industry, Marseille’s Virtual Tape-Out methodology takes expensive trial-and-error out of prototyping thereby fueling rapid development to meet consumer demand. Ultimately, Marseille virtualization technology lowers the risks associated with developing new silicon and increases time to market that can potentially lead to earlier design selection in the device manufacturing process.

“Today’s consumer electronics market demands advanced features to be delivered at light speed,” said Amine Chabane, CEO of Marseille. “The beauty of applying virtual chip prototyping to the problem is that OEMs can actually see the technology working in an end device at the system level, providing assurance they are choosing the right chip the first time and delivering a competitive product faster than ever before.”

As proof of the viability of the new technology, Marseille also announced its line of 4xHD™ video co-processors for the flat panel TV, PC and A/V receiver markets allowing OEMs to rapidly make the move from 1080p HD video to the visually stunning Quad-HD. With less than $5 million in funding to date, Marseille developed their line of complex video chips in less than 12 months each. Such an effort in the past would likely have required an up-front design spend of nearly four times that much or more.

Marseille’s management team combines decades of expertise and innovation in video and networking chip design and has a deep experience in DVD, Blu-ray, Set-Top Box and HDTV SoC design and high quality compression. The team has a rich track record of developing first-time-working silicon and has successfully delivered millions of innovative digital chips to the market.

The Company has many patents in process and is currently working with leading OEMs, panel manufacturers, and silicon providers to use the Virtual Tape-Out methodology to solve challenges in moving to Quad-HD, such as performance, power consumption, time-to-market and cost. To date, market observers have been enthusiastic about the Marseille approach.

“With these virtualization technologies, we will be able to further decrease the cost of design as presently predicted in the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors revitalizing both the Fabless Semiconductor Industry and the ASIC Semiconductor Industry,” said Gary Smith, principal analyst for Gary Smith EDA, a design consultant and industry expert.

About the Video Through Virtualization™ (VTV) 4xHD™

Marseille’s experience in video processing and virtualization has led to the development of its Video Through Virtualization™ (VTV) platform and 4xHD™ Product Family that will enable efficient design of Quad-HD All-In-One PCs, monitors and Quad-HD TVs. The VTV 1200 4xHD™ products allow CE device manufacturers to easily ramp their existing designs to support Quad-HD with minimal hardware and software changes, resulting in faster time to market. Now OEMs can leverage existing hardware, maximize HD design spend and support new Quad-HD standards, all for a fraction of the cost and time without sacrificing performance.

About Marseille Networks

Marseille Networks, headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., has created a new model of fabless semiconductor company that uses virtualization for chip development. The company is lowering the development risks and costs associated with chip manufacturing by allowing real-time, end-market system validation prior to tape-out. The company’s first products tackle the complex design challenges of Quad-HD video processing.

Editors Note: To see a demo of Quad-HD running on an off-the-shelf Full-HD HDTV at CES, contact Kim Stowe at (408)839-8750.

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