Phoenix, AZ Connect One has designed novel functionality into its iChip Plus Internet Controller chip that will support Intersil's PRISM 2 chip set for switchable 802.11b wireless LAN connectivity, in addition to iChip's current support for the GPRS cellular network.
The company is targeting this combined functionality for telematics, transportation and data collection applications that require wireless local area networking when operating within short distances and wireless wide area networking connectivity when on the road.
"Users of portable and mobile products can have the best of both worlds with switchable Wi-Fi and GPRS connectivity," said Alan Singer, Connect One vice president of sales and marketing in a statement.
iChip is an updateable TCP/IP coprocessor that mediates the connection between a host processor and the Internet. It offloads Internet connectivity tasks from the host processor and connects to the Internet via dial-up modems, wireless phones or modems (AMPS, CDMA, CDPD, GPRS, GSM, IDEN, andTDMA protocols), or 10/100BaseT Ethernet LANs and 802.11b wireless LANs.
The device works with GPRS modems from Siemens, Wavecom, Sony Ericsson and Nokia.
Internet protocols and configuration parameters are stored in iChip's onboard flash memory, are independent of the host application, and can be remotely updated over the Internet.
Commenting on the benefits of the new device, Luis Baptista, president of Lisbon, Portugal based Aerotrade Lda, which specializes in the development of mobile video surveillance applications, said "our customers today use iChip and a Nokia 30 GPRS terminal to send live, high-resolution 30 kilobyte images from their trucks to the control room. With iChip's new functionality, their trucks will be able to log-on via WLAN in the depot, and switch to GPRS connectivity when they go on the road. This will save our customers costly airtime."