SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Amid a major microcontroller launch, Renesas Technology Corp. has acquired Key Stream Corp.'s wireless LAN chipset business for an undisclosed price.
With the deal, Renesas (Tokyo) has entered the wireless chipset business. In 2007, Renesas invested in Key Stream (Tokyo), a provider of wireless LAN chipsets.
KeyStream has already developed and sold BB/MAC LSI, RF LSI, and MAC firmware in compliance with IEEE802.11a, 11b, and 11g standard.
Renesas and Key Stream have jointly developed and supplied wireless LAN chipsets, by combining Key Stream wireless LAN chipsets with Renesas microcontrollers.
''Now, due to the harsh business environment and bleak outlook, Renesas and Key Stream have concluded that it will be challenging for Key Stream to continue their business independently and have agreed to transfer a large share of the Key Stream wireless LAN business to Renesas with the intent of continuing support for existing customers,'' according to Renesas.
Separately, Renesas this week announced the first and long-awaited RX family microcontroller (MCU) products. The devices are built around the new RX central-processing unit (CPU) that is destined to become the mainstay of the company's MCU business.
Renesas has been talking about the RX for awhile. The RX CPU implements a complex instruction set computer (CISC) architecture that integrates and extends the capabilities of Renesas' existing 16- and 32-bit MCU products.
The eight devices in the 32-bit RX610 group are advanced 32-bit solutions for high-end office equipment, digital consumer products and similar applications.
The devices operate at speeds up to 100-MHz. The new MCUs consume only 0.03mA/MHz CPU core current. RX610 MCUs have up to 2-MB of on-chip flash memory that can be accessed at 100-MHz in a single clock cycle. They also provide 32-KB of data flash memory with a background operation (BGO) function that enables data to be written at the same time a program is executing.
The new chips, which come in 144-pin LQFP and 176-pin BGA packages, integrate an extensive range of built-in legacy, enhanced and new peripheral functions for system design flexibility. Development work on additional members of the RX600 family is ongoing.
Hit hard by the IC downturn, Japanese chip maker Renesas recently replaced its top executive amid losses, layoffs and plans to shutter older fabs. It is projected to show a $2.294 billion loss and slumping sales for the year.