NXP Semiconductors is one of the earliest company which has focused on Internet of things. NXP Semiconductors has designed range of semiconductor ICs targeting smart and secure opportunities in electronics. This writer talked to Ashok Chandak, Senior Director, Global Sales and Marketing, NXP Semiconductors India on some of their latest products and focus. Here are the excerpts:
Q:Security looks to be a bigger issue than ever before people are talking about security at chip level, hardware level and also software level, how NXP Semiconductors is looking at all this, where do you see real gaps in the security and how NXP is taking on this attractive market?
Ashok chandak: Actually NXP look security as a key requirement, and is going to grow manifold in future, we had a pretty strong lineup portfolio in security domain, not only the chip card level (smartcard, RFID, transactions ID and so forth), if you look at two years ago the brand tagline of NXP brand has already got changed, which we call now "Secure Connections to the Smarter World", that itself is a big change, you can see that whole NXP strategy is a promise of secure connections for smarter world, we see that the world is becoming smarter and everything getting connected, whether it is car, home, appliances, everything. The more you get into everything is connected and everything becomes smarter, security becomes important- and that is why- NXP company has very strong portfolio of security and identification domain - that's why we have positioned the company as secure connections for the smarter world.
Last three years we have a pretty decent growth, very stable company now, both in financial prospective as well as customer acceptance prospective and it is a continuation of momentum actually for the next two years- at least.
Q:On the question of offering some kind of a security related intellectual property to semiconductor chip design companies:
Ashok chandak: No, We are not offering right now any IPR to any chip companies, as of now no plan, future might change, But as we speak right now we are utilising our IPs and experience in our own products.
Q. what are the specific features you have added in the year 2014 to your security ID/access products to make them even more secure?
Ashok chandak: We started working on the cyber security concept now, we started positioning some of the security devices for Internet of things (IoT) as well, Internet of things (IoT) market particularly is an end application, the people are really not bothered to look at the security aspect of the product, once you connect virtually everything ending in cyberspace, you cannot really neglect the security, we are looking more of the applications orientation now, we are seeing the mobile transactions devices, those are been fine tuned and developed for the mobile transactions, many of them are used in the smart phones, We have tuned the devices for this IOT applications for tighter security. These are the portfolios that are gaining further momentum in the market in terms of the new deployment and application development.
Q. NXP's secret to success in microcontroller business:
Ashok chandak: Our strategy for the normal microcontroller remains with the ARM Cortex and other ARM cores , particularly the cortex M0 much more demand and popular.
What we see particularly with NXP (MCU offering) is- you know its like joint family in India, so if you have 10-15 childs in a family everybody is not born equal, though DNA is same but people are different, Same analogy to ARM Cortex based MCUs, though all have ARM core, they are different, not same. And that's where the NXP makes the difference with regard to the code density, with regard to the lower power consumption and really high performance including the integration of peripherals, so here everything we specialise, that's what is working as per market expectations.
Q: Recently Apple selected NXP's ARM Cortex M4 based microcontroller in their iPhone6 models, did they pick off-the-shelf chips or did you design anything specifically for their needs?
Ashok chandak: For some of the big high-volume customers, we have to do the specialised chip, not necessarily the off-the-shelf, because the requirements specifications won't match. mobile phones, smart phones and such latest generation devices might need some specific requirements, sometimes they would specify the requirements and that could be developed, there are many such customers.
Q: NXP Semiconductors growth in India semiconductor market:
Ashok chandak: Actually we are growing more than double-digit in Indian semiconductor market, some of the other companies revenue have declined last year, my understanding is -- in local sales excluding CPU and memory, NXP semiconductors is number one/two in India semiconductor market.
Pic: Ashok Chandak