Case Study: Is Your Development Kit Ready for Customers?

Submitted by BDTI on Thu, 05/20/2010 - 15:00

Time-to-market pressures mean that system designers, software developers and hardware designers require more than just chips from their chip vendors. They demand reliable, easy-to-use software development tools, OS support, middleware and application software components, I/O support, and more—right out of the box. To win design-ins, a chip vendor must deliver much more than just processing performance on a board. Vendors are responding to this demand by packaging specialized boards, development tools, and software components into a variety of increasingly sophisticated and diverse development kits. 

BDTI recently worked with a chip vendor to perform a competitive evaluation of its development kits. The vendor, aware that its kits did not compare favorably with best-in-class competitors, wanted an independent assessment of its kits from the point of view of an experienced embedded application developer.  Leveraging its extensive experience using kits for application development, BDTI structured a program to reproduce a system designer’s experience. Starting with an evaluation of the out-of-the-box experience, BDTI staff went through the entire new user process of installation, bring-up, and familiarization.  BDTI then implemented example designs and modified them. Along the way, BDTI evaluated key factors that impact ease-of-use such as robustness, clarity of documentation, and quality of technical support. Bottlenecks, barriers, and inconsistencies—as well as useful features and strengths—were documented.
 
The result?  In the words of one senior manager at the vendor company: “BDTI’s perspective drove a dramatic culture change in our company.  We now have a very different way of thinking about—and creating—development kits.” 
 
It’s not necessarily the best chip that wins business—it’s the one that’s easiest to build a product on. To learn how BDTI can help your company deliver a better user experience to your customers, contact Jeremy Giddings at +1 (925) 954 1411 or giddings@BDTI.com
 

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