Cadence is onto something that could lower the cost of EDA sales. They are using a service from Xuropa that allows you to login and actually use EDA tools interactively without having to install anything on your computer.
I first became aware of this yesterday when I received an email from Cadence about their Verification IP. Being curious I requested access and was approved within an hour or so by Tom Hackett, an administrator of Cadence VIP. Login was straight forward and there was even a tutorial on how to use their lab examples.
In the old days if you were interested in an EDA tool you had to phone or email your EDA account manager (i.e. sales guy), answer some qualifying questions, ask for an evaluation, install the software, learn the tutorials, then start to run your own designs. This could take weeks to months of time and effort.
With Xuropa we now have the ability in EDA to start evaluating tools within an hour or so without installing software and talking to an Account Manager.
Cadence is dabbling with this technology and only has very limited products for you to evaluate in this manner. This could be a really good thing for both the EDA vendor and tool users.