One of the IP companies that I track is CEVA, the largest licensor of DSP cores. CEVA is the fifth largest IP company behind ARM, Synopsys, Imagination Technologies, and Cadence (Lattice acquired Silicon Image). CEVA is actually a combination of companies which started with the DSP Group and Parthus Technologies in 2002 and RiveriasWaves (WiFi and Bluetooth) in 2014. Today CEVA has signed 375+ license agreements that have resulted in more than 6 billion chips shipped around the world serving the mobile, consumer, automotive, and IoT markets. CEVA has been with SemiWiki since 2012 with 60 blogs published to date and viewed 231,626 times so we know them quite well.
First let’s take a quick look at the Q2 financials:
- Total revenue was $13.4 million (45% YoY Increase)
- Licensing and related revenue was $7.7 million (76% YoY increase)
- Royalty revenue was $5.7 million (17% YoY Increase)
And the most interesting comment during the investor call to me was:
“From CEVA perspective, the smartphone market opportunity is under-exploited. IDC estimates that over 8.5 billion smartphone will be sold from 2015 through 2019. According to GSMA intelligence, 2G technology still accounts for 58% of the world’s 7 billion mobile connections. This large installed base is a prime candidate for upgrade to 3G and LTE smartphone.”
To this I agree wholeheartedly and to highlight that, three key CEVA customers were also discussed: Samsung, Xiaomi, and Intel. With the advent of chip teardowns (chipworks and iFixit) the building blocks of SoCs are no longer secret. Xiaomi, the largest smartphone vendor in China, is using CEVA for LTE as is Samsung, the largest smartphone vendor in the world. Even Intel, the largest semiconductor company in the world, uses CEVA for LTE in their SoFia SoCs and XMM7360 modems.
The other part of CEVA’s business is the newly acquired RivieraWaves Bluetooth and Wi-Fi which you may have seen advertised on SemiWiki. According to CEVA RivieraWaves provides the industry’s lowest power Bluetooth IP compatible with any MCU/CPU and RF available on the market today. RivieraWaves Wi-Fi on the other hand offers a comprehensive suite of platforms for embedding Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac into SoCs and ASSPs. Optimized implementations are available targeting a broad range of connected devices, including smartphones, wearables, consumer electronics, smart home, industrial, automotive applications, etc…
For a more detailed look at RivieraWaves Wi-Fi read: Apple Watch Design Revisit with a Wi-Fi Twist. SemiWiki blogger Majeed Ahmad did a really nice job on this one, absolutely.
About CEVA, Inc.
CEVA is the leading licensor of cellular, multimedia and connectivity technologies to semiconductor companies and OEMs serving the mobile, consumer, automotive and IoT markets. Our DSP IP portfolio includes comprehensive platforms for multimode 2G/3G/LTE/LTE-A baseband processing in terminals and infrastructure, computer vision and computational photography for any camera-enabled device, audio/voice/speech and ultra-low power always-on/sensing applications for multiple IoT markets. For connectivity, we offer the industry’s most widely adopted IPs for Bluetooth (Smart and Smart Ready), Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n/ac up to 4×4) and serial storage (SATA and SAS). One in every three phones sold worldwide is powered by CEVA, from many of the world’s leading OEMs including Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi, Lenovo, HTC, LG, Coolpad, ZTE, Micromax and Meizu. Visit us at www.ceva-dsp.com and follow us on Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn.