BeeProg2

 
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Elnec device counter

Elnec device counter is a simple tool that was developed for graphical illustration of approximate continual progress in addition of new devices support into Elnec device programmer's software during working hours in our company.

Speed of Elnec device counter was determined as an average number of new devices support addition that was derived from long term observation of statistical data.

Elnec is releasing new Regular version of programmer's software approximately every 4 weeks. However, OnDemand version of the software (only for Elnec 48-pin programmers) with most current new devices support and bug fixes is released in average every second working day, and in many cases daily! Elnec provide software download for all programmers without any fees. Addition of new devices support into Elnec device programmer's software is very flexible thank to simplicity of our Device Request (AlgOR service) and number of specialized engineers with highest qualification in staff.

In average (past 10 versions of SW), Elnec is adding 729 new devices per one new version of Regular software for programmers. That means that Elnec is in average adding support of 28 new devices per one working day. This is approximately 2,5 new supported devices per one working hour in the company (07:00 - 18:00 CET) .

In conclusion, when Elnec device counter displays different status than "We are working" it is not moving of course :-) When Elnec release new version of Regular software, device counter automatically starts counting from the actual number of supported devices by this version of programmer software.

Status of device counter can be:

  • We are working.. (7:00 - 18:00 CET)
  • Out of working hours.. (18:01 - 06:59 CET, Weekends, Christmas, New Year celebration)


Current number of supported devices by 3.32 version of Elnec Regular software (11. May. 2017):



Elnec method for device counting & short comparison with some competitors


We have made a great effort to develop such a method for device counting that would be logical and descriptive. Main intention of the Elnec method for device counting is to make it easy for our customers to decide which programmer from our product range is suitable to cover their needs; and also to have an instrument for clear visual demonstration of our continual effort in adding new devices support (software updates & development of programming adapters).

Therefore, according to our method for device counting, we add a device into the list when it is:

  • a new device from particular manufacturer (new programming algorithm necessary to develop),
  • a variation of the device in different package than one already in the list (programming adapter necessary to develop),
  • ISP version of the device - counted only once for every supported package (programming algorithm adjustment necessary),
  • other variation of the device that has significant impact on programming (programming algorithm adjustment necessary).


According to our method for device counting, variation of the device already mentioned in the device list can appear in the list only in case when the variation has a significant impact on programming of the device. It is simply because in this case, action from our side (development cost) is necessary to add the device into the support.

Approach of some competitors

We have noted recently that also other companies producing device programmers are displaying device count numbers. However, it is necessary to mention that our analyses showed that competitors use different methods of device counting than we do, and often count as a new device also variation of the device that has none / little impact on programming. As a result, it can be very misleading for customer when making a decision to compare Elnec device count and device counts of other companies. We are sorry to say that is seems device count methods of some companies were developed only to stun the customer by a great device count number of their programmer, but in reality the number has a little meaning.

Please see following examples (and consider consequences if applied to whole device families; data from 6th of December 2010; Device list of Elnec BeeProg2 used; Device list of competitor product where greatest device count number is promoted used).

Competitor A - Manufacturer from China - but pretending to be from USA

Competitor B - Manufacturer from Germany - very low count of supported chips, therefroe he use cheap trick: counting "by variants"


Example #1

Device: S29GL128PxxFxx01 [Spansion NOR Flash memory]

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A Competitor B
Number of variations of the device in device list 1 4 not supported

Notes (Competitor A):
  • Pb-free / SnPB versions of the device are distinguished (no impact on programming of the device),
  • speed options of the device are distinguished (not necessary to adjust on programming algorithm of the device).


Example #2

Device: uPD78F0103 [NEC - microcontroller with Flash]

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A Competitor B
Number of variations of the device in device list 2 [of which 1 is ISP] 18 [ISP version not supported!] not supported

Notes (Competitor A):
  • counting also temperature and other suffixes of the device (no impact on programming of the device).


Example #3

Device: PIC16C554 [Microchip EEPROM]

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A Competitor B
Number of variations of the device in device list 4 [DIL, SOIC18, SSOP20, ISP] 6 [DIL, SOIC18, SSOP20, ISP 3x! ] 21 [DIL, SOIC18, ISP; SSOP20 not supported!]

Notes (Competitor A):
  • if the competitor supports devices in more packages and also in ISP mode like in this case, the competitor is counting support of ISP for device in each package, although package information is irrelevant for ISP programming.

Notes (Competitor B):
  • counting "by variants" is totally irrelevant, and has a little meaning for the user.


Example #4

Device: AT89C51RD2 [Atmel microcontroller with Flash]

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A Competitor B
Number of variations of the device in device list 6 [DIL, PLCC44, PLCC68, VQFO44, VQFP64, ISP] 7 [DIL, PLCC44, PLCC68 2x!, VQFP44, VQFP64 2x!; ISP not supported!] 20 [ PLCC44 2x!, VQFP44 4x!, VQFP64 2x!; DIL and ISP not supported!]

Notes (Competitor A):
  • in cases when this competitor supports the device version in particular package by more adapters, it appears in the device list more times.

Notes (Competitor B):
  • not only competitor's counting "by variants", but also counting "by package" is incorrect, because in the same way as competitor A this company counts particular device more times if it has more adapters for this particular package.


Example #5

Device: AT80F51 [Atmel microcontroller without Flash]

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A Competitor B
Number of variations of the device in device list - 3! [DIL, PLCC44, TQFP44] -

Notes (Competitor A):
  • this company has in device list also devices where programming is simply not possible (e.g. no flash in microcontroller).



Conclusion

To conclude, according to the results of our detailed analysis, it would be possible to divide number of supported devices displayed at the web page of the manufacturer A (China) approximately by number "5/4"; and to divide number of supported devices displayed at the web page of the manufacturer B (Germany) counting "by variants" approximately by number "5" to be able to compare the device count numbers.

As a result, comparison of device count numbers transformed into Elnec method for device counting would be approximately:

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A Competitor B
Device count 57.557 ~50.620 ~11.990

*Note: Analysis is based on device lists form 6th of December 2010 (Device list of Elnec BeeProg2 used; Device list of particular competitor product where greatest device count number is promoted used).

On the other hand, if Elnec used the same method for device counting as competitor A (China), final comparison would be approximately:

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor A
Device count ~71.950 63.276

*Note: Analysis is based on device lists form 6th of December 2010 (Device list of Elnec BeeProg2 used; Device list of particular competitor product where greatest device count number is promoted used).

In addition, if Elnec used the same method for device counting as competitor B (Germany), final comparison would be approximately:

Elnec (BeeProg2) Competitor B
Device count ~230.220 59.950

*Note: Analysis is based on device lists form 6th of December 2010 (Device list of Elnec BeeProg2 used; Device list of particular competitor product where greatest device count number is promoted used).

At the end, please let us assure you again that we don't cheat our customers and therefore we did not develop our method for device counting for the reason that we want to be able to display highest device count number in the industry, as some of our competitors do. In opposite, the intention is to display correct number by which customer can easily distinguish between our products, and can see our effort in adding new devices support (software updates & development of programming adapters).