Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (Cypress) has surpassed the 500 million unit mark in shipments of its new programmable system-on-chip (PSoC). Commercial-scale PSoC shipments began in 2002. In June 2006, the company shipped its 100-millionth unit. In September 2007, Cypress hit the 250-million unit mark. PSoC devices combine programmable analog and digital blocks with memory and a microcontroller, and deliver a new solution that offers designers unmatched flexibility, integration and time-to-market.

With the PSoC Designer development tool, customers use pre-built, configurable library elements for both analog and digital functions. This novel embedded design methodology frees engineers to focus on developing new products and features, rather than focusing on time-consuming microcontroller programming.

The PSoC ramp is arguably one of the fastest in the history of embedded systems. Market leaders such as HP, Cisco, Motorola, IBM, Honeywell, Samsung, LG, Lenovo, Haier, Acer, Fujitsu, Hitachi, Nintendo, Sharp, Philips and Gaggia are among the thousands of PSoC customers worldwide. PSoC devices are at the heart of a near-limitless variety of applications, including home appliances; cell/smart phones set-top box platforms; electric toothbrushes; air cleaners; e-bikes; high-definition televisions; digital cameras; remote-control hobbyist helicopters; computer mice, printers and other PC peripherals; health and fitness equipment; automobile sound systems, satellite radios and engine control units; medical equipment; lighting applications; motorized baby strollers, intelligent athletic shoes and MP3 players.

The PSoC architecture is also at the core of other Cypress offerings, such as the TrueTouch touchscreen solution, CapSense touch-sensing, CyFi low-power RF, and EZ-Color LED lighting.

PSoC is the product of elegant and economical thinking on how to build a truly versatile solution for embedded applications, said Cypress President and chief executive officer T.J. Rodgers. It’s the ultimate ‘time-to-market’ device, enabling our customers to create unique chips with software in hours rather than weeks or months. And this is just the beginning; we are now sampling lead customers with our next-generation PSoC devices, which will provide twenty times more microprocessor horsepower and better analog to take the programmable system-on-chip to the next level.

Half a billion shipments in such a short period of time proves that the unique approach that PSoC offers in addressing embedded system design has struck a chord in the industry, said Tom Starnes, principal at market research firm Strategy Sanity. Flexibility is key when a product is being developed and the more easily you can create, and later shift your design, the more likely the end product will hit the target market.

PSoC—Because Change Happens:

PSoC devices employ a highly configurable system-on-chip architecture for embedded control design, offering a flash-based equivalent of a field-programmable ASIC without lead-time or NRE penalties. PSoC devices integrate configurable analog and digital circuits, controlled by an on-chip microcontroller, providing both enhanced design revision capability and component count savings. They include up to 32 Kbytes of Flash memory, 2 Kbytes of SRAM, an 8×8 multiplier with 32-bit accumulator, power and sleep monitoring circuits, and hardware I2C communications.

A single PSoC device can integrate as many as 100 peripheral functions saving customers design time, board space and power consumption while improving system quality and reducing system cost.

The flexible PSoC resources allow designers to future-proof their products by enabling firmware-based changes during design, validation, production, and in the field. The unique PSoC flexibility shortens design cycle time and allows for late-breaking feature enhancements. All PSoC devices are also dynamically reconfigurable, enabling designers to morph internal resources on-the-fly, utilizing fewer components to perform a given task.