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Agere and Unicom Collaborate on Multimode WI-Fi Reference Design
Posted: 11-Mar-2004 [Source: Agere Systems]

[Innovative chip and software designs enable high-performance 802.11a/b/g router, access point and network peripheral products]

Allentown, PA and Mountain View, Calif. -- Agere Systems and Ubicom(tm) Inc. announced a collaboration to develop high-performance access points, routers and network peripherals for 802.11a/b/g networks. These designs benefit from exceptional hardware and software integration, delivering high-speed performance using compact, low-cost Wi-Fi solutions for both enterprise and residential applications.

Combining Agere's WaveLAN(tm) multimode chip set and Ubicom's IP3023(tm) wireless network processor and software, these Wi-Fi solutions leverage optimized architectures to provide up to three times the routing speed of competing solutions. Agere and Ubicom will be showing these reference designs at the CeBIT 2004 trade show, which will be held March 18-24 in Hannover, Germany.

Agere's WaveLAN multimode chip set delivers superior range and throughput, coupled with the industry's most competitive bill of materials. Ubicom's innovative processor platform integrates memory on-chip to improve packet processing speeds, and their architecture greatly reduces die area and external memory requirements.

Multimode chip set performance

Agere's high-performance multimode solution solves the problem of seamless connectivity in a world of multiple wireless network standards, through dynamic selection of a, b or g depending on the system capabilities, channel loads and the type of information transmitted. Capitalizing on a wireless architecture design that includes a single-chip, dual-band radio implementation for OFDM-based 11a and 11g, Agere's WaveLAN multimode chip set brings significant cost efficiencies through reduced bill of materials and small die size. The radio is coupled with a multimode media access controller (MAC), a multimode baseband processor and a dual-band power amplifier to form a fully interoperable, single platform for 802.11a/b/g solutions.

Wireless network processor integration and software benefits

Ubicom's industry-leading price performance is enabled by a patent-pending architecture designed for real-time tasks and low latency. The IP3023 wireless network processor features an interrupt response time of less than five clock cycles in typical applications, while MIPS- and ARM-based system-on-a-chip (SoC) solutions running the Linux operating system require thousands of clock cycles to respond to an interruption. Additionally, the IP3023 and Ubicom's ipOS network operating system can process packets with half the latency of typical solutions, dramatically improving response times for games, voice and other interactive applications. As a result, the IP3023 can support multiple clients and functions without suffering the performance degradation that occurs with other platforms. Sample quantities of these new multimode reference designs are expected to be available in the second calendar quarter of 2004, with volume production beginning in the second half of 2004.

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