ALTERA CORP

ALTERA CORP

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Company Overview
Altera Corporation is a company that designs, manufactures and markets programmable logic devices (PLDs). The company was formed in 1983 with the invention of programmable logic solutions, which enables system and semiconductor companies to rapidly and cost effectively innovate, differentiate, and win in their markets.
Altera is one of the pioneers of Programmable Logic, following notable early leaders Signetics and MMI in introducing PLDs. Altera develops many features that are geared towards system-on-a-programmable-chip (SOPC) capability. These include embedded memory, embedded processors, and high-speed transceivers.
Based in San Jose, California, Altera is a leading manufacturer of programmable logic devices and it employs approximately 2,600 people in 19 countries. It is also a member of the NASDAQ-100 group of technology stocks and the S&P 500.
Altera offers field-programmable gate arrays (FPGA), complex programmable logic devices (CPLD), and structured application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC) in combination with software tools, intellectual property, and customer support to provide high-value programmable solutions to approximately 14,000 customers worldwide.
Altera also offers the software suite Quartus II, aimed at the design and simulation of logic circuits. Although their software suite extensively supports VHSIC hardware description language (VHDL) and Verilog as primary languages, Altera is the developer of the Hardware Description Language known as Altera Hardware Description Language (AHDL).
Altera maintains partnerships with industry-leading technology suppliers, such as foundry partner Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC). The company aims to be the preeminent supplier of custom logic solutions to the electronics industry through product leadership, excellent value, and superior quality and service.
Altera’s products include the following: Stratix III FPGAs, Stratix II FPGAs, Stratix II GX FPGAs, Arria GX FPGAs, Cyclone III FPGAs, Cyclone II FPGAs, HardCopy II Structured ASICs, MAX II CPLDs, Quartus II Software, Nios II Embedded Processors, Altera Development Kits, Partner Development Kits, Cyclone II Device Handbook, Stratix II Device Handbook, Quartus II Software Handbook and many more.
Altera operates sales offices in the following US states: California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Ontario, Oregon, Texas, and Wisconsin. It also as international sales offices in China, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Sweden, Taiwan and the United Kingdom.
Altera has distribution agents in the following US and Canadian locations: Alabama, Alberta, Arizona, British Columbia, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Manitoba, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Ontario, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Quebec, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin. Its products are also distributed by local distributors in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, the Philippines, Poland, Russia, Scotland, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, The Netherlands, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.
Furthermore, the company has a number of sales representatives throughout the US as well as countries such as China, France, Germany, Mexico, Norway, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
Business Summary
Altera Corporation (Altera) is a semiconductor company. The Company designs, manufactures and markets programmable logic devices (PLDs), HardCopy application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs), pre-defined design building blocks, known as intellectual property (IP) cores, and associated development tools. Altera is a supplier of complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) PLDs. The Company’s PLDs consist of field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) and complex programmable logic devices (CPLDs), which are semiconductor integrated circuits, or chips, that its customers program to perform logic functions in their electronic systems. Its HardCopy ASICs enables its customer transition designs from FPGAs to non-programmable implementations. Altera’s IP cores can be licensed by customers to add functions to their PLD designs.
Description and history
Altera Corporation (Altera) is a semiconductor company. The Company designs, manufactures and markets programmable logic devices (PLDs), HardCopy application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs), pre-defined design building blocks, known as intellectual property (IP) cores, and associated development tools. Altera is a supplier of complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) PLDs. The Company’s PLDs consist of field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) and complex programmable logic devices (CPLDs), which are semiconductor integrated circuits, or chips, that its customers program to perform logic functions in their electronic systems. Its HardCopy ASICs enables its customer transition designs from FPGAs to non-programmable implementations. Altera’s IP cores can be licensed by customers to add functions to their PLD designs. The development software, which operates on personal computers and engineering workstations, is used by customers to develop, compile, and verify their designs, and then program their designs into its PLDs.

Devices

The Company’s devices are classified in to four categories: FPGAs, CPLDs, HardCopy ASICs and configuration devices that store the programming code for its FPGAs. Altera’s Stratix product families are built using advanced CMOS process technology and address a range of applications requiring system integration across its markets. Stratix FPGAs provide embedded system functionality, such as memory and digital signal processing (DSP) blocks. Its Stratix IV GX and Stratix IV GT FPGAs offer advanced transceiver capabilities for applications that require multi-gigabit serial data transfer rates of up to 11.3 gigabits per second (Gbps). Its Arria product families are built using advanced CMOS process technology and enable transceiver-based design for applications requiring data transfer protocols. Arria II GX FPGAs offers signal integrity with data transfer rates of up to 3.75 Gbps. The Company’s Cyclone product families are built using CMOS process technology. Its Cyclone IV GX FPGAs incorporate up to eight integrated transceivers with data rates up to 3.125 Gbps. The Company’s MAX families are non-volatile CPLDs that are used in high-speed glue logic functions for a range of electronics equipment. The Company’s HardCopy ASICs offer customers a migration path from FPGA families to ASIC for high-volume production.

Intellectual Property Cores

IP cores are pre-verified building blocks that execute system-level functions. Customers integrate IP cores in their PLD designs with the Company’s development software. Soft IP cores available for use in its devices include the Company’s Nios series of embedded processors, portfolio of MegaCore functions that the Company licenses to its customers, and its Altera Megafunction Partners Program (AMPP) cores, which are pre-verified by the Company and licensed to its customers by third parties. The Nios series of embedded processors use a reduced instruction-set computing (RISC) architecture and can be used in its FPGAs and HardCopy ASIC devices. The Company offers a range of soft IP cores for DSP algorithms, bus interfaces, memory controllers, telecommunications, data communications, microprocessors and peripherals. Before licensing a soft IP core, customers can download an encrypted soft IP core from the Company’s Website and verify that it works in their own system designs.

Development Tools

The Company’s customers use its development tools, consisting primarily of the Quartus II software, for design entry, design compilation, design verification, and device programming. Designers can use the Company’s development tools on a variety of computing platforms, including Microsoft Windows, UNIX (including Solaris and HP-UX), and Linux operating environments.

The Company competes with International Business Machines Corp., NEC Corporation, Toshiba Semiconductor Company, LSI Logic Corporation, Texas Instruments Inc., Freescale Semiconductor Inc., Microchip Technology Inc. and Xilinx, Inc.

Formed with the invention of programmable logic solutions

Business Line
Designs, manufactures and markets programmable logic devices (PLDs)
Subsidiary
ALTERA CANADA CO
Advisor
PRICEWATERHOUSECOOPERS LLP
IPO date
3/1988
US SIC Code
3674
Company Address
101, Innovation Drive

City province or state postal code
95134, SAN JOSE, CA
Phone: +1 408 544 7000
Fax: +1 408 954 8186
Country address: UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Website url: www.altera.com