Advantech Rolls Out High Performance Embedded USB Technology

5/28/2003 - Advantech Co., Ltd. is pleased to announce the launching of high performance embedded USBs, which expands easier–to-use technology. Advantech held the Embedded Technology Forum at Taipei Headquarters on May 27, 2003. During this forum, core technology advancements and trends in embedded applications were analyzed, including the new Embedded USB architecture. Advantech Embedded Computing Group re-defined the specification of Embedded Universal Serials Bus Interface (EMD USB), and provided attendees with critical information to win market leadership. Embedded USB adds flexibility to Embedded computing platforms, including a standard USB interface that can accommodate various types of communication, Flash memory, and Industry Measurements & Control I/O.

The Embedded USB interface specification defines an alternate implementation for small form factor USB modules referred to in this specification as an Embedded USB Module. This specification uses a qualified sub-set of the same signal protocol, electrical definitions, and configuration definitions, same as the USB 2.0 specification. Embedded USB offers plug-and-play functionality, increased data transfer speeds, and peer-to-peer transmission. USB 2.0 is one of the key technologies for users who need simpler, easier to use PCs that don’t sacrifice connectivity or expandability. Its specification provides a higher performance interface targeting of 480 Mbps, 40 times bandwidth of USB 1.1. Its Hi-speed transmission specification is fully compliant with USB 1.1. USB 2.0 lets users benefit from an additional range of higher performance peripherals, such as telecommunication, fast storage devices and industrial I/O control devices with the same ease-of-use functionality. The applications are used to take advantage of higher transfer-rate and ease-of-use of USB 2.0 peripherals and drives, which perform better with access to higher bandwidth.

Embedded USB Modules are removable and upgradeable with available“new technology” cards. Embedded USB enhances the connection between embedded single board computers, wireless, industrial control devices, and peripherals, such as IEEE 802.11x , blue-tooth wireless, memory, network access devices, industrial measurement devices, control devices, or high-resolution video-conference cameras. The solid connector design meets industrial computers’ high reliability requirements.

“USB 2.0 is becoming more popular because of high-performance characteristics with transfer rates up to 480 Mbps. USB 2.0 drivers are available for Microsoft® Windows® 2000 and later Windows operating systems. All of the USB 2.0 specifications mentioned above apply to a wide range of products. In addition, the reduced size of the Embedded USB Module is smaller than PCMCIA cards or small PCI cards. Embedded USB Modules will be mass-produced, resulting in higher quality than low-volume custom boards. In fulfilling the requirements of the embedded market, Advantech has put more effort in developing embedded products which support EMD USB.”, said Charles Kang, Advantech Embedded Computing Group Product Manager, “The Embedded USB interface specification defines an alternate implementation for small form factor USB Module as an Embedded USB Module. The form and pin design of Embedded USB is completely defined in the USB 2.0 specification providing clear implementation guidelines for future development by multiple vendors.”

Charles Kang launched the speech titled Advantech Embedded USB Technology at this forum. The speech consisted of the Embedded USB specification defined, strengths of USB Implementation and USB product trends & applications. The specification defined three form factors: Type I, Type II and Type III all have dual 18-pin connector interfaces; all connectors use the PC standard 2.54 mm pin pitch pin header. Type I only supports Flash memory Module.

The new industrial storage device – USB DOM, is smaller than any storage device on the market, which capacities up to 256 MB. Designed for mission-critical environments, the Embedded USB DOM has higher vibration tolerance than general HDDs or CompactFlash, plus longer MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) as well. With high serviceability, the Embedded USB Modules can be easily replaced if they fail. Designed with plug-and-play in mind, Embedded USB DOM uses an idiot proof design; both the key pin and mechanical connectors eliminate incorrect placement. Through a standard USB 2.0 Hi-Speed USB interface, EMD USB can offer a significant value proposition.

Type II/III are different from Type I, which is a vertical assembly with respect to the Main board (SBC). Type II/III are horizontal assemblies, perfect for supporting a Flash memory Module, Blue-Tooth Module, Wireless LAN Module or Industrial I/O control module. The Embedded Computing Group has been involved in developing and researching Embedded USB technology, and demonstrated various Type II/III applications. The POS-7380 (Point-Of-Sale SBC) applied successfully an Embedded USB 2.0 high-speed transmission interface. The embedded USB Type II & III under development is an evolutionary step that increases performance capabilities at a lower cost.

Adding to the patented new Embedded USB interface, Advantech also demonstrated developed products that support the Embedded USB specification. During this forum, the Certified Peripherals & Components Division, one of the Advantech’s new divisions, will promote the Embedded USB DOM (Type I) to industrial computer manufactures through Advantech’s existing sales channels and strong on-line ordering system. Please visit their on-line forum for further information at:

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