Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE:CY) introduced an upgraded version of its wireless protocol that enables flawless operation in the 2.4-GHz spectrum. The new version of Cypress’s best-in-class AgileHID(TM) wireless protocol is specifically designed to overcome interference from emerging 802.11n networks, which, along with cordless phones, microwaves and other devices in the 2.4-GHz band, can severely hamper the performance of wireless peripherals. It also further reduces the power consumption of Cypress’s 2.4-GHz WirelessUSB(TM) LP and PRoC(TM) LP Programmable Radio-on-a-Chip wireless solutions, extending battery life in various wireless applications such as PC peripherals, remote controls, toys, medical instruments and industrial appliances. The new protocol is currently available in the CY4672 PRoC LP Reference Design Kit (RDK).
The AgileHID protocol accomplishes interference immunity and power saving by enabling two unique features of Cypress’s 2.4-GHz radio devices: dynamic Data Rate (DR) and dynamic Power Amplification (PA). Dynamic DR delivers uninterrupted data transfer despite interference from 802.11n networks. Dynamic DR works by enabling the radios at both the transmitting and receiving ends to dynamically switch modes to adapt to the interference level of the environment – bouncing from Cypress’s patented, frequency-agile Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS) technology to a Gaussian Frequency Shift Keying (GFSK) mode. The DSSS mode transmits at 250 Kbps with enhanced robustness and extended range, while the GFSK mode transmits data at 1 Mbps and saves battery power. Dynamic PA works by automatically adjusting the PA setting of the radios to adapt to the range required for reliable communication, significantly preserving battery life.
“We have forecasted that unit shipments of 802.11n access point and bridge router equipment will grow rapidly to exceed 31 million units in 2011,” said Dr. Jagdish Rebello, director and principal analyst at market research firm iSuppli. “As bandwidth-hungry 802.11n technology becomes more common in the home, manufacturers of other 2.4-GHz peripheral devices will face a significant challenge in designing products robust to this increased interference.”
“Cypress’s existing wireless protocol and reference designs helped us complete our designs quickly at high quality with great RF performance,” said Kim Chen, Darfon’s Senior Sales Manager. “With Cypress’s new protocol, our tests have shown that our products will be prepared for 802.11n interference in the 2.4-GHz spectrum.”
“We based our WirelessUSB and PRoC technology on the ability to deliver uninterrupted performance in a crowded 2.4-GHz environment, and the new features of our protocol extend our leadership in this area,” said Matt Branda, senior product marketing manager of Cypress’s Wireless Solutions. “With wireless mice, keyboards, remote controls and other applications already coping with many sources of interference, the dawn of 802.11n networks poses the most severe test yet for these products. With Cypress’s new wireless protocol, our PRoC LP and WirelessUSB LP customers will be uniquely prepared for this challenge and we expect this to result in further growth for our wireless solutions moving forward.” Cypress recently announced it has shipped over 20 million units of its wireless solutions, and that it has secured over 200 design wins for WirelessUSB LP and PRoC LP in the last year.
The CY4672 PRoC LP RDK includes a compact wireless mouse, a feature-rich wireless keyboard, and a small form-factor bridge. To further streamline the development process, it also offers kit documentation, hardware schematics, bill of materials, development tools, and flexible firmware for customization. Manufacturers can easily copy the reference designs exactly, and only need to add enclosures to produce ready-to-ship devices. In addition, the PRoC LP RDK features firmware and hardware support for Microsoft Windows HotStart (Direct Application Launch), a new feature in Vista for launching applications directly from system startup through button presses from input devices.
About Cypress’s Wireless Solutions
Cypress’s proprietary 2.4-GHz WirelessUSB solution delivers an unparalleled combination of performance and cost versus competing wireless technologies. The DSSS-based technology is robust to interference and enables superior operational range. Cypress’s WirelessUSB LP device features a highly integrated radio transceiver plus digital baseband on a single chip that enables designers to significantly decrease development time, component count and system cost while improving operating range, power-consumption and latency.
Cypress’s award-winning PRoC LP Programmable Radio-on-a-Chip offers an unparalleled feature set to enable superior interference immunity, low bill-of-materials (BOM) costs, higher data rate applications, and faster time-to-market for dongles/bridges, mice, presenter tools, and remotes, as well as other simple, multi-point-to-point wireless applications. PRoC LP integrates the WirelessUSB LP 2.4-GHz transceiver and enCoRe(TM) II 8-bit programmable Flash microcontroller (MCU), which creates opportunities for customers to design the world’s smallest wireless applications. It operates between 1.8 and 5.25 volts, using advanced power-saving techniques to extend battery life in devices such as wireless mice. This combination of low power consumption, DSSS interference immunity and low cost make it ideal for wireless HID applications. PRoC LP also incorporates the user-friendly KISSBind(TM) feature, which enables a user to intuitively link a wireless peripheral to the desired host by simply bringing them in very close proximity with one another, thus lowering customer support calls.
Cypress delivers high-performance, mixed-signal, programmable solutions that provide customers with rapid time-to-market and exceptional system value. Cypress offerings include the PSoC(R) Programmable System-on-Chip(TM), USB controllers, general-purpose programmable clocks and memories. Cypress also offers wired and wireless connectivity solutions ranging from its WirelessUSB(TM) radio system-on-chip, to West Bridge(TM) and EZ-USB(R) FX2LP controllers that enhance connectivity and performance in multimedia handsets. Cypress serves numerous markets including consumer, computation, data communications, automotive, industrial, and solar power. Cypress trades on the NYSE under the ticker symbol CY.
Cypress, the Cypress logo, PSoC and EZ-USB are registered trademarks, and AgileHID, WirelessUSB, PRoC, enCoRe, KISSBind, Programmable System-on-Chip, and West Bridge are trademarks of Cypress Semiconductor Corporation.