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Based: Bath, U.K.
Founded: 2000


Why is it Fierce? picoChip is truly a cutting-edge company, with its multi-core DSP setting the standard for signal processing performance and affordability. The picoArray is a massively parallel, MIMD architecture linking different types of processing elements. The company says that the processing power of the picoArray beats any of today's leading DSPs by a factor of more than 10. And more than 90 percent of this computing power can be used in real systems with the complex mix of control and datapath processing. The PC 102 picoArray also has substantial amounts of general-purpose MIPs to handle the complex and fast-changing control operations of modern wireless systems, which must adapt rapidly to channel conditions and service demands. The company also offers complete software reference designs for WiMAX and UMTS and last month showed its reference design for 802.16e-2005.

What to look for: picoChip has been ahead of the pack on several fronts and there is every reason to believe it will continue to occupy that position in the future. The company has astutely positioned itself at the intersection of two growth trends--WiMAX and the Asian communication market.  


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