Mark Littlefield, Lumiance Technology
For years FPGAs have been a workhorse of high-performance embedded DSP. The massively parallel nature of FPGAs is ideal for solving tough problems in the SWaP-limited embedded DSP domain. However, COTS board-level suppliers have struggled to integrate user-programmable FPGA-based products into their product portfolios and to make money from them. High component costs and long development times have meant that such products tend to be both expensive and have a very low return-on-investment for the COTS supplier. As a result, many smaller players remain small, and the larger players who have FPGA-based product lines have not seen the levels of sales or growth that more traditional single-board computers or DSP/multiprocessor boards have previously enjoyed.