Knowles Acoustics, Akustica Agree to Cross License Patents

Knowles Acoustics and Akustica, Inc. announced that the companies agreed to enter into a cross-licensing arrangement which reinforces the strength of each company’s respective patent portfolios. Knowles Acoustics and Akustica are the leading companies for silicon MEMS microphone design, manufacturing, and sales. Both company’s innovations are tightly protected by several MEMS microphone processing and packaging patents. Terms of the agreement are confidential; however, there will be no restrictions on sales of products from either company.

“Knowles was the first company to launch a MEMS microphone product and ramp into high volume manufacturing,” said Jeffrey Niew, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Knowles Acoustics, “but we have always recognized that the growth and success of the MEMS microphone industry is based on the entry of other MEMS microphone manufacturers into the market. This agreement encourages competition in the marketplace while also acknowledging that the basis of fair competition is intellectual property protection.”

“This agreement will benefit Knowles and Akustica customers,” said Jim Rock, president and CEO of Akustica. “Cooperation between the MEMS microphone market leaders creates an environment that stimulates innovation. The customers win by having a choice between microphone products and can select the solution that works best for their applications.”

About Knowles Acoustics
Knowles Acoustics is a division of Knowles Electronics LLC, the world leader in microacoustic technology for the Hearing Health and Consumer Electronics Industries amongst others. Within these markets Knowles is a leading supplier of acoustic interface solutions, specifically surface mount MEM’s microphones, subminiature transducers, and speech enhancement software. As the pioneer in the field of MEMS Microphone Technology, Knowles recently shipped its 300 millionth MEMS microphone, making SiSonic(TM) the most widely used MEMS Microphone in the world. For more information visit Knowles Acoustics’ website or call 1-630-250-5935.

About Akustica
Akustica is the leading supplier of digital-output microphone products that are improving voice input quality in a host of voice-enabled applications, from Internet telephony on notebooks to PC camera modules and mobile phones for companies such as Fujitsu Computer Systems and Gateway Computers. Since Akustica microphones were introduced last year, the semiconductor industry has recognized Akustica’s CMOS MEMS technology with accolades and honors, including an EDN Innovation award, an Electronics Products Magazine “Product of the Year” award, and most significant Leapfrog technology of the year from Electronic Design readers. For more information about Akustica, call (412) 390-1730.