ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- Agere Systems Inc. today introduced a USB 2.0 analog chip for customized digital-only ASICs serving the Universal Serial Bus 2.0 standard.
The introduction is a change in course for Agere, which last year announced it was pulling out of the USB 2.0 market to focus more attention of 1394b serial links (see July 16 story). Agere said it was now re-entering the USB market.
The new USS2X1 analog chip is aimed at supporting digital-only ASIC designs used in high-speed USB 2.0 data connections between PCs and computer peripherals devices, such as hard-disk drives, digital video cameras, printers, and scanners. Agere said its new device gives peripheral manufacturers the flexibility to design and develop digital-only ASICs for systems without placing the analog functions on the same chip.
"When we announced we were exiting the market last year, the industry, economy, and adoption of USB 2.0 were different than they are now," said Dan Devine, senior marketing manager for Agere's USB standard products. "We kept listening to our customers, and many asked us to continue developing USB 2.0 technology."
Agere said its new analog chip enables up to 480 megabits per second of data transmission through USB connections -- up to 40 times faster than 12-Mbit/sec. USB 1.1 devices. The Allentown-based company said its USS2X1 adheres to the USB 2.0 Transceiver Macrocell Interface (UTMI) specification, which provides a standardized interface for USB transceivers to customer-designed ASICs.
Samples of the USS2X1 chip are available now, with production volumes scheduled to begin in July. The chip is priced at $2.50 in quantities of 100.