Test and Measurement: Cadence Design makes strategic alliance with NI, acquires NI’s AWR

Cadence Design Systems and National Instruments’ new strategic alliance focuses on electronic system innovation for communications

Cadence Design Systems and National Instruments have put together a strategic alliance aimed at bringing more innovation to electronic system design, with a focus on communications, which will more tightly integrate Cadence’s high-frequency design automation software into NI’s platforms.

At the same time, Cadence will acquire AWR, an NI subsidiary that focuses on high radio frequency electronic design automation (EDA) for an undisclosed amount. That acquisition “will bring a highly talented RF team to Cadence,” the two companies said in a release. AWR is an industry leader in high-frequency RF EDA software.

The joint efforts build upon an existing relationship between the two companies that started in 2018, to collaborate on improving overall semiconductor design and testing of wireless, automotive and mobile integrated circuits and modules. The two companies said that through the new strategic alliance agreement, they “expect the joint development of technology, methodology and intellectual property to streamline electronics development” and that they hope to “create an integrated design to test flow, leveraging reusable data and test IP from electronics design and verification to validation and production test for electronic system and semiconductor companies.”

“Companies designing communication and radar chips, modules and systems face increasing time-to-market pressure in high-growth 5G/wireless applications. Creating differentiated products while reducing cycle time requires a seamless design, simulation and analysis environment,” said Dr. Anirudh Devgan, president of Cadence, in a statement. “The addition of AWR’s talent and technologies will enable us to provide more integrated and optimized RF design solutions, thereby further accelerating system innovation as we execute our Intelligent System Design strategy.”

NI said that “the flows resulting from the integration of AWR technology with Cadence computation software are expected to be tightly connected with the NI LabVIEW and PXI modular instrumentation systems and semiconductor data platform” as part of the strategic alliance.

“By combining NI’s advanced semiconductor validation and test systems with Cadence’s industry-leading technology in analog mixed-signal and RF design and verification, we can help our customers accelerate time to market, reduce costs and improve product quality. We look forward to working with Cadence to make this vision a reality in a fast-paced environment,” said Alex Davern, NI CEO.

In other test news:

Keysight Technologies reported a “very strong finish” to a strong year, with revenues up 7% in its fiscal fourth quarter to $1.12 billion. Net income for the quarter was $195 million, compared to a net loss of $114 million in the year-ago quarter.

For its full-year results, Keysight saw revenues grow 11% compared to fiscal 2018, to $4.303 billion. Net income for the year was $621 million, up from $165 million in the prior year.

“Keysight delivered a very strong finish to the year with both revenue and earnings, exceeding the high-end of our guidance for the quarter,” said Keysight President and CEO Ron Nersesian. “Record-setting quarterly and annual revenue was driven by growth across our portfolio of differentiated solutions, and broad-based momentum across multiple end markets. We continued to execute on our strategy and growth initiatives, while exceeding our commitments to customers and shareholders.”

Keysight noted that it bought back about 2.1 million shares for a sum of $160 million during the course of its fisal 2019, and it has another $410 million remaining in authorized share buy-backs to make.

In other Keysight news, the company said that it worked with Marvin Test Solutions to come up with a faster, accurate solution for 5G semiconductor testing that integrates Keysight’s Vector Network Analyzer; and that its 5G conformance test solutions will be used by Korea Testing Laboratory for global 5G New Radio device certification. In addition, CustomCells, which specializes in lithium-ion batteries, is going to install Keysight’s battery cell formation line in its manufacturing location in Tübingen, Germany.  The two companies are also working together on “new algorithms, software, instrumentation, and formation/measurement methods.”

Spirent Communications put out a new security appliance, the C200, which focuses on 100G and provides “carrier-class performance for applications, attacks and cryptographic testing,” according to the company. Spirent added that the new offering “represents a significant expansion” of its Spirent CyberFlood security and application performance testing solutions. In related news, the company also integrated its CyberFlood Data Breach Assessment solution with Fortinet’s Security Fabric.

Spirent noted that the integration came about through its participation in a Fortinet interoperability program, and that its integration enables Fortinet customers to have automated security policy recommendations designed to address weaknesses discovered during ongoing assessments by CyberFlood.

Accuver says it has multiple commercial deployments of its a new Massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) Air Interface Simulator System in Europe. Accuversaid that its MAIS is used in operator and vendor test labs to replicate the RF environment in the field — which, increasingly, includes massive MIMO sites.

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