There should be a space for taking designs one better, as higher voltage ratings and designs that function like the original but are not just knockoffs. A older comparator found in many designs is very sensitive to having its inputs out of range, blowing it up. A drop in replacement by a smart team could capture new business as well as MRO.
An older design teams less intent on always faster could create parts that do not require designers to go to links to filter out overfast response where it is not necessary or desired.
Analog requires more precision that digital, and a newer fab like TSMC could provide less variation on key parameters perhaps. And as die get larger eventually, low defectivity will pay off as well. Interesting experiment in any case.
As the Zen Master says, "We will see."
Some interesting comments here. However, competing with the established analog leaders (be it NSM/TI, Maxim, LTC, or ADI) is not easy nowadays, ~30 years after the founding of LTC and Maxim. Everything has a time, as they say, and I am pretty convinced that our time today is not the time for this type of a venture, Pierre Lamond's judgement notwithstanding (Pierre was certainly wrong for example when funding Integration Associates, to name just one). One thing is for sure: this company will be very good news for patent lawyers and patent expert witnesses, because IF they ever become successful they will be tied up in patent litigation to no end.
are you kidding? maxim has a longstanding reputation of claiming outstanding parts that you can't actually buy. i have already resolved never to design in maxim after the last time they burned me, and the same is true for most of my friends at different companies. but i admit, some maxim products are great and i would love to buy those from someone other than maxim if their supply chain was more like LT's, so sign me up for touchstone!
It's hard to imagine that a business model based on cloning Maxim chips in TSMC18 and selling them for less money can be successful. Obviously there's more to this story, otherwise it's even harder to imagine a VC putting $12M into this idea.
These guys will likely do well in an environment where these products are needed. Automotive, Mil-Aero, and Medical spaces can not tolerate loss of supply. That said, it never appealed to me to bottom fish either.
I can see the point of their strategy because we have several parts disappearing from production and we find there is not a replacement. There are also segments of the analog market where the choices are very limited. The typical analog market to target these days is power management, because that is where the growth is.
It is hard to go fabless in the analog world because a big company canít switch fabs without causing production problems. Some companies say they manufacture the wafers then package the parts when needed.
I have heard that VCs donít like semi companies any more and only a few have gotten money. Did these guys have some special value proposition other that replacement parts? One value proposition of old processes is cheap wafers and low cost.
Blog That A-Ha Moment Larry Desjardin 12 comments Have you ever had an a-ha moment? Sure, you have. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as "a moment of sudden realization, inspiration, insight, recognition, or ...