Electronic devices are becoming increasingly sophisticated, at a rate that is nothing short of astounding. The market has an insatiable appetite for new features, as long as they are easy to use. Devices continue to converge, while new, more complex digital technologies enter the market at a staggering pace.

As if the resulting pressures on SOC designers aren’t bad enough, their job is made even more difficult by relentless economic and competitive challenges. Not only must they design ever more complex devices, they must deliver them to market more quickly. Their devices have shorter and shorter life expectancies, the market place is increasingly fickle and unforgiving, and intense competition makes differentiation—and profit margins—more and more elusive.