Renesas Technology Corp. announced an agreement to invest in Key Stream Corporation, a provider of wireless LAN chipsets, and to collaborate in the field of wireless LAN solutions. As the trend in networked mobile devices continues to grow, there is strong demand for wireless LAN solutions with reduced power consumption and lower cost. Renesas Technology possesses the world’s leading manufacturing capability of microcontrollers (MCU) and advanced system-on-chip (SoC) technology, which has been applied to products for the mobile, digital consumer electronics, and automotive fields.
For its part, Key Stream is strong in wireless LAN chipsets that are the most advanced of their kind and provide ultra low power consumption. These are widely used in products such as portable audio players and mobile VoIP handsets.(1) The collaboration between Renesas and Key Stream will combine the strengths of the two companies and enable to deliver wireless LAN solutions that meet the ever more demanding requirements of the consumer electronics industry.
Initially, the companies will supply wireless LAN solutions for the consumer electronics market by combining Renesas’ extensive portfolio of SoC and MCU products with Key Stream’s wireless LAN chipsets. In the next stage, they will utilize Renesas’ high-frequency and SoC technology to develop advanced SoC products with built-in wireless LAN functionality and single-chip products specifically for wireless LAN applications. Renesas and Key Stream are also planning to jointly develop IP supporting next-generation wireless standards.
Shiro Baba, managing officer and general manager of the system solution business group at Renesas Technology said, “Mobile, consumer electronics, and automotive are key fields for Renesas, and the demand for wireless LAN functionality is increasing in these fields. Renesas Technology is currently working to offer total solutions based on the comprehensive EXREAL Platform(TM).(2) By embedding low-power wireless LAN technology from Key Stream into this platform from Renesas, we will be able to deliver large-scale SoC-based wireless LAN solutions to market much faster.”
Takayuki Kobayashi, president of Key Stream, characterized the agreement in these terms: “The field of wireless LAN in embedded devices has come to embrace a broad range of products, including audio devices and game machines. The market for such products is growing steadily. By combining Renesas’ broad portfolio of MCU and SoC products, as well as their advanced high-frequency and semiconductor design technology, with low-power wireless LAN technology from Key Stream Corporation, we will be able to deliver solutions with higher added value. In addition, the investment by Renesas will strengthen the corporate foundation of Key Stream and enable us to further enhance our development, sales, and customer support systems. This
will increase the level of customer satisfaction.”
About Renesas Technology Corp.
Renesas Technology Corp. is one of the world’s leading semiconductor system solutions providers for mobile, automotive and PC/AV (Audio Visual) markets and the world’s No.1 supplier of microcontrollers. It is also a leading provider of LCD Driver ICs, Smart Card microcontrollers, RF-ICs, High Power Amplifiers, Mixed Signal ICs, System-on-Chip (SoC), System-in-Package (SiP) and more. Established in 2003 as a joint venture between Hitachi, Ltd. (TOKYO:6501) (NYSE:HIT) and Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (TOKYO:6503), Renesas Technology achieved consolidated revenue of 906 billion JPY in FY2005 (end of March 2006). Renesas Technology is based in Tokyo, Japan and has a global network of manufacturing, design and sales operations in around 20 countries with about 26,200 employees worldwide.
Overview of Key Stream Corporation
Key Stream Corporation was established in December 2000 with the goal of developing and marketing wireless LAN chipsets. In the intervening years it has developed and brought to market wireless LAN communication processors supporting the IEEE 802.11a, 11b, and 11g standards and RF chips. Key Stream supplies wireless LAN chipsets featuring wireless LAN communication processors with embedded CPUs and the company’s exclusive low-power technology, mainly for mobile embedded applications. Key Stream is unique in providing a comprehensive range of services including LSI design; firmware, driver, and application development; reference designs using chipsets; and consulting.
1. Mobile phones, smartphones, and PDAs that provide outgoing and incoming VoIP calling functionality by utilizing wireless LAN networks. VoIP is a technology for sending and receiving audio data over TCP/IP networks such as the Internet or intranets.
2. A “mother platform” developed by Renesas Technology that is used to deliver platforms optimized for specific applications.