CSR's BlueCore brings channel skipping technology to new Intersil Mini-PCI card for 802.11b and Bluetooth

12/11/2002 - CSR (Cambridge Silicon Radio), the world's leading provider of single-chip radio devices, has collaborated with Intersil, a world leader in solutions for analogue and wireless networks, and SMART Modular Technologies, a wholly owned company of Solectron Corporation and a leader in modular communication products, to produce a mini-PCI card combining Bluetooth and 802.11b wireless protocols. The combo card uses CSR's channel skipping technology, minimising interference between the Bluetooth and 802.11 radios and improving the throughput of the Bluetooth radio by as much as 50 percent over solutions that rely on MAC level signalling. SMART expects to make card samples available in January 2003.

Intersil's leading 802.11b chipset PRISM 3 chipset is combined with CSR's BlueCore2 chip, the market leading single-chip Bluetooth solution, to produce this reference design which offers a very low power consumption with a mini-PCI standard form factor, allowing it to be easily integrated into notebooks, PDAs and other compact battery-dependent portable devices. SMART Modular Technologies is the alpha ODM partner on the Mini-PCI reference design. SMART's experience with wireless solutions, outstanding quality controls, global manufacturing footprint and proven supply-chain management capabilities makes it an excellent choice for expediting the production of this groundbreaking dual technology card.

This new combination Mini PCI solution offers Class 2 Bluetooth functionality that is based on the Cambridge Silicon Radio's BlueCore 2 Single Chip Silicon Solution. The module has been developed to achieve Bluetooth radio receive sensitivity better than –82dBm and power output +2dBm (typical). The 802.11b radio receive sensitivity is better than –85dBm and power output +16dBm (typical).

Using this card, PC and PDA manufacturers can implement the two complementary wireless standards and allow them to be operated simultaneously. The mini-PCI card reference design can be licensed from Intersil (www.intersil.com). The reference design will provide all the resources required by an OEM to develop a PC or PDA enabled with both Bluetooth and 802.11b. For example, this would allow a notebook PC to connect to a wireless LAN using the faster 802.11b technology, and at the same time, to lower power Bluetooth peripherals (e.g. printers, mice and keyboards) or mobile handsets or to synchronise PDAs.

About CSR
CSR (Cambridge Silicon Radio) specialises in providing single-chip radio devices to the global market for short-range wireless communications, including BluetoothTM. The company’s mission is to create the most highly integrated radio devices available, fabricated using standard CMOS technology, to provide its customers with the lowest cost of ownership of high quality digital radio.

CSR was the first company in the world to offer a true single-chip Bluetooth solution with BlueCore, a fully integrated 2.4 GHz radio, baseband and microcontroller. In Q4 2001 CSR released BlueCore2, its second generation family, and offer developed hardware/software bundles for each of the fastest growing Bluetooth applications markets. Users can combine the chips with the CSR Bluetooth software stack to provide a fully compliant solution for data and voice communications or, used with an upper layer host software stack, CSR is able to offer a complete Bluetooth end-to-end solution.

CSR has a growing list of major international companies including Microsoft Corp, Samsung, Sony, Compaq, IBM, Fujitsu, LG, ALPS, TDK, 3Com, Mitsumi, Siemens and Motorola, who have already used CSR’s BlueCore in the development of a range of Bluetooth products. In fact, 70% of available pre-qualified modules, as listed on the qualified products page of the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) web site, feature BlueCore and it is in 57% of all qualified Bluetooth v 1.1 enabled end product designs.

CSR is headquartered in Cambridge, UK, with offices in Richardson, Texas; Tokyo, Japan; Singapore and Aalborg, Denmark.

SMART Modular Technologies, Inc. is a wholly owned operating company of Solectron Corporation. SMART, a leading independent manufacturer of memory and Communication products offers more than 500 products to leading OEMs in the computer, networking and telecommunications industries. The memory product line includes specialty and standard DRAM, Flash memory and SRAM modules and Flash memory cards. The Communication product line includes standard and custom wireless and wire line communications devices and modular Communication sub-systems for client-side and central office applications. SMART operates several specialized manufacturing and design facilities and has access to the worldwide manufacturing operations of Solectron Corporation. More information on SMART can be obtained on the Internet at http://www.smartmodulartech.com.

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