The Coming Era of Field Programmability (or ASICs are Dead!)

ASICs will continue to be an important design technology for a smaller and smaller set of high performance applications. In the communications field, ASICs will continue to be the design technology of choice when the problem is closer to the core of the network. However, as the problem moves closer to the access side programmable technologies, whether they be programmable standard products or field programmable chips, will and are becoming a desirable choice. The need for absolute performance in this segment gives way to the need for design flexibility, multiprotocol functionality and fast time-to-market. The trend shows no signs of abating.

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