Breaking News
Blog

ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?

Clive Maxfield
6/16/2011 07:41 PM EDT

 7 comments   post a comment
NO RATINGS
View Comments: Newest First | Oldest First | Threaded View
keys_er_soze
User Rank
Rookie
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
keys_er_soze   1/17/2012 8:25:32 PM
NO RATINGS
According to me, the problem lies in the fact that when we see a new product we try to categorize it either as Asic or Soc or Assp. A product can be Aisc and Soc at the same time. So, lets suppose we have a product A. If the product is self sufficient, i.e it doesn't need other ICs to complete the system, then it can be termed as SOC. And now with A being a SOC, if it was build for some company, say X it is an Asic. But if was build as a general IC, it would be called an Assp.

EricC
User Rank
Rookie
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
EricC   6/23/2011 3:10:26 PM
NO RATINGS
Since he's the guy tabulating the numbers, I'll go with whatever terminology Bryan Lewis of Gartner chooses.

Doug.Amos
User Rank
Rookie
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
Doug.Amos   6/23/2011 1:48:59 PM
NO RATINGS
Vocab is important, isn't it?! For me (and I think most) an SoC ALWAYS includes at least one processor core, running embedded software. An ASIC doesn't (as Brian says, there aren't many of those around). Also, I recall that here used to be another view that ASIC defines a vendor-serviced flow (including for example place and route) different to Customer-own-tooling (COT)+Foundry. So an "ASIC house" means something very specific. Of course, some folks interchange the terms SoC and ASIC at random , sometimes in the same sentence (curse'em!). Maybe it's best, in any given context (for example a book) to define what we mean by such terms and then move on (but stick to it). The EE world is not short of acronyms; let's not generate more without good reason. having said that, I like the Altera-coined term SOPC (but that's 10 or so years old already). By the way, EEtimes own "My account" profile page lists Analog, Digital and SoC as different things side-by-side.

SZA
User Rank
Rookie
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
SZA   6/16/2011 9:50:03 PM
NO RATINGS
I tend to agree with Brian Bailey too, perhaps its time to simplify vocabulary a bit :). Almost all chips we see around are somehow a SoC (even Intel Microprocessor in wide sense). @Duane Benson is right the base should be SoCs. Atleast 3 kinds are all around us. PSoCs oh sorry! Programmable SoCs, General GSoCs, Application specific ASSoCs.

Max The Magnificent
User Rank
Blogger
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
Max The Magnificent   6/16/2011 8:17:19 PM
NO RATINGS
I forgot to mention Programmable SoCs in the form of today's high-end FPGAs (we can't say PSoC because Cypress have that trademarked ... the little scamps :-)

Duane Benson
User Rank
Blogger
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
Duane Benson   6/16/2011 8:08:55 PM
NO RATINGS
Perhaps, we ought to start thinking in terms of ASSOC. That would be an abbreviated form of someone you from time to time hang out with, or, more relevantly, an application specific system on chip. I can see need to differentiate broad application SOCs from purpose designed SOCs.

Max The Magnificent
User Rank
Blogger
re: ASICs versus SoCs – is there a difference?
Max The Magnificent   6/16/2011 7:49:38 PM
NO RATINGS
So… what DO you think?

Flash Poll
Radio
LATEST ARCHIVED BROADCAST
EE Times editor Junko Yoshida grills two executives --Rick Walker, senior product marketing manager for IoT and home automation for CSR, and Jim Reich, CTO and co-founder at Palatehome.
Like Us on Facebook

Datasheets.com Parts Search

185 million searchable parts
(please enter a part number or hit search to begin)
EE Times on Twitter
EE Times Twitter Feed