Toshiba said Tuesday that it has become the first Japanese supplier of bus switch ICs with the launch of its TC7MB series. Toshiba's new family is aimed at a chip market segment that is growing 20 percent a year, according to market research firm Insight Onsite.
According to Toshiba, the series will be used in a range of products, including portable PCs, computer servers, networking products, and PDAs. The products will be housed in Toshiba's Ultra Small 20 package, which the company said is the world's thinnest 20-pin package. Samples of bus switches without diodes will be made available on May 1 followed by ICs with diodes on June 1.
The market for bus switch ICs stood at about $171 million in 1998 and is expected to reach nearly $300 million in 2002, based on a forecast from Insight Onsite, in San Jose, Calif.
Tokyo-based Toshiba said samples of its bus switch ICs will sell for $1. Mass production is slated to begin in the third quarter with 1 million chips being fabricated a month, according to the company.