Is Adobe going to set up a chip design unit? At an internal innovation conference on Tuesday, Adobe CTO Abhay Parasnis asked his colleagues whether this is an era Adobe should dabble in. Parasnis pointed out that significant performance increase can be achieved via chips designed specialized tasks. Various paths are being considered, including partnering with an existing chipmaker to package Adobe technology close to the silicon in datacenters.
"Do we need to become an ARM licensee?" he said, referring to the company whose underlying chip design is used across a wide range of devices, including computers, servers and phones. "I don't have the answer, but it is something we are going to have to pay attention to."
Later in the day, Parasnis told me that there are a range of ways that Adobe could get deeper into silicon.
"ARM does afford a model for a software company to package its technology much closer to silicon," he said, adding Adobe could do that without literally making its own chips, including by partnering with an existing chipmaker.
This also ties well into today's earlier story about the end of the era of general purpose computing chips.