Atmel Rolls Out CryptoRF Wireless ICs for Contactless Smart Cards, RFID

5/14/2003 - Atmel® Corporation (Nasdaq: ATML) announced a new CryptoRF family of devices for contactless smart cards and industrial RFID. CryptoRF is available with 1K to 64K bits of memory, advanced security and cryptography. These encrypted devices provide much higher security than traditional proximity ID badges. Customers will enjoy many of the same security features found in microcontroller-based RF smart card systems. Because this solution does not require the added expense of an operating system or ROM development resources, these products are lower cost and faster to market. The higher capacity memories are capable of storing photos and biometric information for even greater security. Based on an open system architecture, these devices offer customers the freedom to use a wide variety of RF readers. CryptoRF chips are ideal for securely storing sensitive data in applications such as e-purse, passports, visas and healthcare cards.

"These new CryptoRF products provide numerous options for customers in the contactless market to customize security with an off-the-shelf product," said Kerry Maletsky, ASIC/ASSP Business Unit Director at Atmel Corporation. "Atmel is the only semiconductor manufacturer to provide a full family of RF products that allow multiple applications with different levels of security on the same card."

Customers can mix and match CryptoRF memory sizes as data requirements change without expensive ROM or RF reader changes. An identical mutual authentication and cryptography algorithm is used by all CryptoRF devices, allowing single- and multi-application cards to be used in the same application without increasing system development costs. The security features of CryptoRF are identical to those in Atmel's CryptoMemory® contact smart card IC family, providing current CryptoMemory customers a simple migration path from contact to contactless applications. CryptoRF utilizes a 13.56 MHz RF communication interface with a robust anticollision protocol, and is optimized for a multi-card RF communications environment. Its multiple zones, passwords and 64 bit keys are programmed by the customer to fill individual application requirements. These encrypted RF devices can be used with any reader compatible with ISO/IEC 14443 Type B cards.

High-volume pricing in module form will range from $0.35 to $0.80 depending on the memory capacity. These devices are in production and development kits are available now. Samples of this product family are available in wafer, smart card and RF module form.

About Atmel
Founded in 1984, Atmel Corporation is headquartered in San Jose, California with manufacturing facilities in North America and Europe. Atmel designs, manufactures and markets worldwide, advanced logic, mixed-signal, nonvolatile memory and RF semiconductors. Atmel is also a leading provider of system-level integration semiconductor solutions using CMOS, BiCMOS, SiGe, and high-voltage BCDMOS process technologies.

Atmel, the Atmel logo and CryptoMemory are registered trademarks and CryptoRF is the trademark of Atmel Corporation or its subsidiaries.

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