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'[OT]: Atmel Availability, Was -Anyone have a solid'
2001\01\09@223753 by Matt Bennett

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"Alexandre Domingos F. Souza" wrote:
>
> >The company I used to work for is going to think very, very hard before
> >they design another Atmel part into a product. Lets face it, *most* of
> >us here are not huge manufacturing concerns.  Our lifetime use of these
> >parts would hardly make a blip on Microchip's or Atmel's forecasts.  We
> >have some good parts and good tools because they forsee selling a large
> >quantity of these parts.  But if they can't deliver, the big boys will
> >stop buying, and we won't have them to play with. I really liked a lot
> >of things about the AVR, but there is one great advantage about the PIC-
> >I can get them.
>
>         An interesting subject: Why do you do embeeded programming? Is it for your own fun? Or
> is it for profit??? If it's for your fun, anything you code will suit - Even a BASIC program
> in a 8052 (another good question: In english, when you use the "a" before a number as it were
> consonant, or "an" as if it were a vowel?) will work ok to you. But if you are doing that for
> profit, the first thing a smart company will ask you to do is "redesign it using the xxx
> processor". And better you know how to do it, because if else, your project won't be approved.
> That's where the support - in engineering and sale - fits, what if you make a revolutionary
> device using the Atmel MCU, if you can't buy it to make 1k???

Right now, I do it for my own fun- but the company I used to work for,
when they concieved of the project, there was no availabilty problem for
the 8515, the reps were all smiles and samples.  They thought about
redesigning it, but there were a couple problems: No other processor had
the price/performance, and we used it to its fullest, for some of the
(very important) features, a PIC couldn't keep up.  We could replace the
functionality that the AVR's speed was vital for, but that was another
very expensive part, that just happened to be on allocation (single
source).  It was a very price and time sensitive product, so we couldn't
afford to go more expensive, or push back the ship date.  We could have
re-designed, but it would have required a new PCB, and restarting the
regulatory process, further increasing the engineering cost.

What it boils down to is this- going with Atmel really screwed up a
project I worked on.  I'm going to be very wary before ever designing an
Atmel part into anything that will be going into production.  I really
like how the AVR works for me, but going with Atmel is a risk that I
have to manage.  For my own personal work, it is probably going to be
low volume, so I'll go with whatever is best for the project, but one of
the important engineering decisions is this : "What will affect my
ability to ship on time?"

Oh, and about the a/an thing- it all depends on what the initial *sound*
is- if it is a vowel sound like 8502- 'an' is more proper, but a
consonant *sound* like 7400 would take an 'a'.

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2001\01\10@011454 by Bill Westfield

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   What it boils down to is this- going with Atmel really screwed up a
   project I worked on.  I'm going to be very wary before ever designing an
   Atmel part into anything that will be going into production.

Of course, Atmel is building more fab capacity to help address these
problems.  I'm not sure why their AVR prices are so low - seems like they
could charge a bit more and still compete against similar products (like
PICs.)  I think they wanted their flash parts to compete agains OTPs,
though.

Unfortunately, this sort of thing can happen to any company.  I personally
had a project screwed over by Intel, when they discovered that their Flash
process didn't work on the production-sized fab line they were planning on
making them on.  Sigh.

BillW

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