First Read

A first take on enterprise IT technology news and events.

ARM Buys Duolog for SoC Configuration

Duolog's Socrates platform will enhance ARM's capabilities for integrating IP onto SoCs, officials said.


ARM is bulking up its IP configuration capabilities by acquiring Duolog Technologies, which creates tools to help design systems-on-a-chip and integrate technology onto those designs.

ARM officials announced the deal May 29, saying the company will be able to leverage Duolog's Socrates platform to enhance its capabilities for adding IP—such as debut and trace IP—to its offerings and to help its partners manage the increasing complexities around SoC integration. The Duolog acquisition also will expand the reach of ARM's CoreLink interconnect and controllers and its CoreSight debug and trace technologies throughout the enterprise, mobile arena and Internet of things (IoT) market, official said.

The Socrates platform offers IP configurations in a standardized way that can be used in EDA tools for such jobs as subsystem functional verification and validation, they said.

ARM officials said the deal should close in the third quarter. No financial details were released.

ARM designs low-power SoCs and licenses those designs to the likes of Samsung, Qualcomm, Nvidia, Texas Instruments and Advanced Micro Devices. Chips based on the ARM architecture are found in most mobile devices—including smartphones and tablets—as well as a wide range of embedded systems.

ARM is now looking to extend the reach of its architecture into such areas as the data center and the nascent IoT. ARM this year is launching its ARMv8-A 64-bit architecture, which is being adopted by some chip vendors—including AMD, Marvell Technologies and Samsung—to build processors that can be used in a range of data center systems, including low-power and highly dense microservers. Already Hewlett-Packard and Dell have said they will use ARM chips in some server designs.

However, the move into the data center will mean another area of competition against Intel, which has a market share of server chips that tops more than 80 percent. The IoT also is another point of contention, with chip makers seeing a huge opportunity to expand into a growth market that IDC analysts said could grow to $7.3 trillion by 2017. Cisco Systems officials have said there will be as many as 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020.