Structured ASIC design (also referred to as platform ASIC design) has different meanings in different contexts. This is a relatively new term in the industry, which is why there is some variation in its definition. However, the basic premise of a structured/platform ASIC is that both manufacturing cycle time and design cycle time are reduced compared to cell-based ASIC by virtue of there being pre-defined metal layers (thus reducing manufacturing time) and pre-characterization of what is on the silicon (thus reducing design cycle time). One definition states that
In a "structured ASIC" design, the logic mask-layers of a device are predefined by the ASIC vendor (or in some cases by a third party). Design differentiation and customization is achieved by creating custom metal layers that create custom connections between predefined lower-layer logic elements. "Structured ASIC" technology is seen as bridging the gap between field-programmable gate arrays and "standard-cell" ASIC designs. Because only a small number of chip layers must be custom-produced, "structured ASIC" designs have much smaller non-recurring expenditures (NRE) than "standard-cell" or "full-custom" chips, which require that a full mask set be produced for every design.
This is effectively the same definition as a gate array.
Courtesy : Wikipedia