CSR (LSE:CSR) announced the launch of its UniFi UF6000 range of Wi-Fi chips, the world’s smallest and lowest-cost range of 802.11n compatible devices to add to its Connectivity Centre line-up. At less than 16mm-sq of silicon, the UniFi UF6000 devices are designed as embedded Wi-Fi products making them the lowest cost way of adding an 802.11n enabled Wi-Fi to mobile devices.
As more smart and feature-phones start to include Wi-Fi, CSR has released the UniFi UF6000 Wi-Fi range to provide manufacturers with the lowest cost route to integrate Wi-Fi into handsets without compromising on performance or PCB space. CSR’s UF6000 range supports IEEE 802.11a/b/g and n, and follows on from CSR’s highly successful UniFi range of Wi-Fi chips. By achieving lower cost points for Wi-Fi integration, Wi-Fi can be integrated into mainstream handsets and portable devices where previously the cost was prohibitive.
By combining the UF6000 with the company’s recently launched low cost GPS and Bluetooth chip, BC7830, CSR is able to offer customers Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and FM transmit and receive at a combined silicon area of 27mm-sq – the main competing solution is 40% bigger.
“The introduction of the UniFi UF6000 range is the next step in CSR’s Connectivity Centre,” explained Joep van Beurden, CEO, CSR. “Wi-Fi is a key connectivity technology and the ubiquity of Wi-Fi hotspots means that it remains the fastest and cheapest way to connect devices to the Internet, whether for browsing or photo, video and media upload or download. As well as small size and low cost, what really matters for embedded Wi-Fi is strong performance. With best-in-class throughput and coexistence, the UniFi UF6000 range is set to excel in all categories,” he added. “It complements our recently announced BlueCore BC7830 that supports GPS, Bluetooth and an FM transceiver all in a single device. With these two devices, CSR’s Connectivity Centre supports all the mainstream connectivity requirements for handsets and consumer electronics devices.”
With a silicon size of less than 16mm-sq, the UniFi UF6000 range is the industry’s smallest 802.11n compatible device. All of the series are available in 0.5mm pitch Wafer Level Chip Scale Packaging (WLCSP), the smallest and lowest cost packaging option. This means that the UniFi UF6000 range can easily be adopted for chip-on-board designs, a key step in lowering the cost for manufacturers to embed Wi-Fi. For module solutions; ultra-thin WLCSP packages can be supplied with an impressive low profile of just 0.35mm. The UniFi UF6000 range is available in either 2.4GHz only or 2.4/5GHz giving complete flexibility to manufacturers in their choice of Wi-Fi.
The UniFi UF6000 range supports IEEE 802.11n Single Spatial Stream, providing high data speeds of up to 72Mbps, enabling mobile devices to benefit from the higher speeds of 802.11n without requiring the multiple power hungry radios of the current 802.11n MIMO solutions. The UniFi UF6000 range also supports technology known as Space Time Block Coding (STBC), which provides state-of-the-art throughput and range in challenging RF environments. The UniFi UF6000 range is fully compliant with IEEE802.11e QoS, Wi-Fi Alliance WMM® Power Save and 802.11n power saving, ensuring the lowest possible power consumption.
“By combining Bluetooth, FM, GPS and keeping Wi-Fi separate, we’ve managed to really optimise the size and performance of our Wi-Fi design without making compromises to unnecessarily combine them onto a single chip,” explained Raj Gawera, Vice President, Marketing, Handset Business Unit, CSR. “The proof of the benefits of our ‘Smart Integration’ approach is in the resulting devices – the combined silicon size of CSR’s BC7830 and UF6000 is just 27mm-sq. By comparison, the main rival Bluetooth-Wi-Fi solution is a combination device that looks somewhat bloated as it takes up 40% more silicon area, and does not include GPS. This breaks the myth that Bluetooth-Wi-Fi combinations are cost effective – what really matters is clever architectures and efficient design. Of course, all of this size reduction is achieved without compromising performance – we still maintain the industry’s best Bluetooth-Wi-Fi coexistence performance. Packing more and more radios into a smaller silicon area than ever before is really the key to CSR’s size and cost leadership.”
CSR also today launched its Synergy wireless host software; the ‘glue’ that holds the Connectivity Centre together. CSR’s Synergy supports multiple standards, including Bluetooth, Bluetooth low energy, Wi-Fi, UWB, eGPS, NFC, audio-DSP functions and FM receive and transmit. Synergy ensures that all of these connectivity systems work together as a unified system and achieve maximum efficiency and performance – substantially easing the task of designing-in these technologies and substantially improving the end-user experience. OEMs can integrate chips such as UniFi UF6000 with Bluetooth, GPS and other technologies easily, while still enjoying the coexistence and other performance benefits.
The UniFi UF6000 range of devices is already being sampled to key tier one customers.
CSR is the pioneering supplier of the technology for the Connectivity Centre with a product portfolio covering Bluetooth, GPS, FM and Wi-Fi (IEEE802.11). CSR has a track record for consistent innovation that has resulted in a leadership position for supplying wireless technologies. CSR’s customers include industry leaders such as Apple, Dell, LG, Motorola, NEC, Nokia, Panasonic, RIM, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, TomTom and Toshiba. CSR has its headquarters and offices in Cambridge, UK, and offices in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, China, India, France, Denmark, Sweden and both Dallas and Detroit in the USA.