DALLAS -- Texas Instruments Inc. today announced it has begun sampling a complete chip set solution for 2.5-generation wireless handsets using the General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) Class 12 format. In addition to the three-chip set, TI said it will offer a full suite of software for GPRS units.
The Dallas company is hoping to jump-start new designs by offering "a complete wireless reference design that is ready to be put into final plastics and manufactured in less than six months of development time," said Jean-Luc Villevieille, manager of the company's wireless chip set solutions business unit.
The TCS2100 GPRS chip set includes TI's TBB2100 dual-core digital baseband IC, a highly integrated TWL3014 analog baseband device with complete power management functions, and a single-chip direct conversion radio-frequency transceiver, called the TRF6150. TI said the solution package will include wireless software, including a complete GPRS/GSM protocol stack, a broad library of multimedia applications, and the TI Wireless Software Foundation embedded platform and development tools.
The TBB2100 digital baseband is built upon a dual-core chip architecture, which includes TI's TMS320C54x digital signal processor (DSP) and a RISC processor licensed from ARM Ltd. The baseband IC supports Class 12 GPRS wireless communications, while supplying the processing headroom for value-add GPRS functions and applications, said TI.
A GPRS reference design will be available in the fall of 2001, with a complete bill of materials, software suite, board design and layout. TI said it will also provide worldwide customer support to assist developers "all the way to full-scale production."
The advanced wireless handset market is struggling today, but manufacturers are expected to produce more than 480 million Global System for Mobile communications (GSM)/GPRS handsets by 2005, according to Dataquest Inc. Of that total 377 million handsets are expected to be GPRS units--or 78% of the GSM/GPRS segment.