PARIS Almost a year has passed since Freescale Semiconductor Inc. unveiled its six-core DSP chip, but not much has been seen about design wins for it. The wait is over. Freescale said it has achieved a design win with Alcatel-Lucent and expects to make similar announcements soon.
As part of a collaboration program initiated in June, Alcatel-Lucent (Paris, France) said it has selected Freescale’s QorIQ P4080 processor and MSC8156 DSP as the foundation for a platform targeting highly flexible wireless basestations designed to meet current and future requirements of the world’s leading wireless carriers.
In an interview with EE Times Europe, Lisa T. Su, Ph. D., senior vice president and general manager, networking and multimedia & chief technology officer, explained: "This is for their next generation basestations for wireless infrastructure, and looking at really taking the platforms to the next level. I think that the trend that we are seeing today in the industry is that all key infrastructure providers are really looking for building systems that allow you to do multiple standards in the same hardware because there is a lot more efficiency for them and a lot more efficiency for the operators. We have done some work on their system requirements to enable that to happen."
As indicated on the group's website, Alcatel-Lucent has been conducting LTE market research in Europe, Japan and North America. The Alcatel-Lucent research, which began in November 2008, suggests that receptivity to LTE services is strong with a willingness to pay. Benefits to consumers and enterprises in the form of faster communication, increased productivity, innovative services and flexibility will be a key to adoption.
Alcatel-Lucent also referred to Pyramid Research, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, whose findings indicate that global uptake of LTE will be faster than any previous mobile standard. LTE subscriptions will reach 136 million by 2014. Subscriptions in the early stage will come from developed markets, such as Japan and the U.S., but China will lead in emerging markets, which will grow 30 percent faster than developed ones. Additionally, Pyramid Research said it expects new players in emerging markets to leapfrog 3G and move directly to deploy LTE.
Freescale indicated that its six-core DSP chip, the MSC8156, uses the StarCore SC3850 DSP core technology that is designed to dramatically improve the capabilities of wireless broadband base station equipment, including LTE. The MSC8156 is made in a 45nm process and is available in two speed grades, 800 MHz and 1 GHz.