Redpine pushes concurrent dual-band Wi-Fi into phones
Latest chipset combines gigabit 802.11ac standard in 5GHz with 11n and Bluetooth in 2.4GHz, at low power
Published: 17 April, 2012
Redpine Signals is pushing the new gigabit Wi-Fi standard, 802.11ac, into handsets, differentiating itself from the mainstream focus on home equipment. The company has announced its latest system-on-chip (SoC) which promises simultaneous dual-band support for 11ac in 5GHz and 802.11n/Bluetooth 4.0 in 2.4GHz. This claims 1.3Gbps peak PHY throughput at power levels suited to smartphones and tablets.
The RS9333 chipset incorporates Redpine's Quali-Fi 802.11ac technology, which supports 3x3 MIMO antenna arrays, and its ThreadArch multithreaded processor. The 3x3 11ac element, which delivers the peak data rate, can be reconfigured in software to support simultaneous 2x2 11ac in 5GHz and 1x1 11n in 2.4GHz, for greater flexibility.
Via ThreadArch, the RS9333 can run 11ac, 11n and BT4.0 concurrently while still keeping a free hardware thread available for offload of Layer 3 and application specific functions. Although the chip is mainly targeted at low power devices, it can also be included in home or enterprise routers, and provides PCI-e, USB and SDIO3.0 host interfaces.
"Concurrent dual-band is synonymous with large costs and high power today and is limited to high end routers. This is mainly due to the usage of two separate baseband chips one each for 2.4 and 5GHz and the associated costs of a high end network processor," said Redpine CEO Venkat Mattela in a statement. "With Quali-Fi RS9333 Redpine is spearheading the integration of concurrent dual-band into power, form factor and cost-sensitive products like smartphones, tablets and ultrabooks."
Reference designs will be available to customers in the third quarter, together with Redpine's OneBox software framework.
"Cloud-based services and multimedia streaming are increasing the demand for wireless bandwidth and QoS. These demands are pushing next generation Wi-Fi 802.11ac out of the crowded 2.4GHz spectrum and into the 5GHz band. Concurrent dual-band support enables 802.11ac to meet next generation requirements while providing backward compatibility with legacy 2.4GHz networks," said Linley Gwennap, principal analyst at The Linley Group, in a statement issued by Redpine.