3/30/2004 - i3 micro technology AB (i3) and Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE:TXN) announced plans to strengthen their existing relationship by working together on future solutions for Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) telephony and advanced media set-top boxes. Building on TI's position as a long-standing supplier of semiconductor devices to i3, the new products will integrate TI's DSL semiconductor solution with i3's Vood (Voice Options on Demand) product line. The first products are expected to ship in Q3 2004. Additionally i3 and TI plan to collaborate on other advanced voice telephony and video media products in the future.
The new i3 Vood VoIP devices are targeted to broadband ISPs (Internet Service Providers) delivering Internet access over DSL, and will enable new revenue streams from advanced telephony features, high-quality voice and multiple telephone lines over a single broadband connection.
A March 17, 2004 Juniper Research report on broadband value added services stated: "Our forecasts for the residential market shows that market value is forecast to grow almost five-fold from now to 2009 as broadband users migrate from circuit switched to IP-based services. IP-voice is the most important service followed by video services, VOD, video telephony, and television."
i3's VoIP gateways already leverage the processing power and flexibility of TI DSP products to offer state-of-the-art telephony on a broad range of network infrastructures. By adding DSL capabilities, based on TI's market-proven AR7 single-chip DSL router solution, i3's voice gateways will offer increased value to the fast growing residential VoIP market. The i3 solution will address current operator infrastructure hurdles like NAT traversal and firewall transparency by integrating these functionalities into the new products. By offering increased bandwidth as well as advanced networking functions for quality of service (QoS) and IP multicast, they also target to be a part of a triple play infrastructure, i.e. to deliver high quality media services. The new i3 VoIP devices will also allow end-users to benefit from high voice quality and multiple telephone lines over a single broadband connection.
"TI is sharing i3's views of the future VoIP and media markets. TI DSL products are market leading in terms of feature set and performance," says Chris Chalkitis, Chief Technology Officer at i3 micro technology. "For us, the TI platform was the obvious choice as it enables i3 to gain a competitive advantage in this booming market," concludes Mr.Chalkitis.
"i3 is one of the leading providers of voice gateways and advanced media products, both of which are fast developing markets, and areas in which TI's technology and product performance can add a competitive edge," said Michael Seidl, Business Development Manager of TI's DSL group in Europe. "We look forward to our continuing work with i3 to create powerful new products that will contribute to their success."
Driven by the AR7, TI's DSL solution features an integrated 32-bit RISC processor, a DSP-based digital transceiver, and an ADSL analog front end on one chip. Its flexible architecture enables a wide range of end-equipment design configurations. By merging the capabilities of three chips into one, the AR7 provides i3 with more functionality while reducing costs that can be passed along as savings to i3 customers. In addition, the AR7 is also the first CPE platform to integrate the new, higher performance standards, ADSL2 and ADSL2Plus with a DSP's flexibility to adapt to numerous access network switch technologies.
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