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Motorola brings convergence to mobile devices

Posted: 02 Jun 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:motorola? mobile extreme convergence? mxc? arm1136? applications processor?

With cost, time-to-market and size becoming more important in mobile devices, Motorola believes its Mobile Extreme Convergence (MXC) hardware and software platform is just the right answer.

The two-core MXC architecture stresses both better integration and a lower number of cores. By integrating multiple functionalities, Motorola hopes to shrink 300 to 400 components into one package as small as a postage stamp. The new architecture also separates applications and communications processing to reduce development complexity and cost.

The MXC is powered by an ARM1136 applications processor running at 400MHz with L1 and L2 cache. Communications processing is handled by a baseband processor based on an improved version of the StarCore SC140 called the SC140e, which operates at 208MHz with an L1 cache. The two processors use a shared-memory subsystem that has an advanced crossbar switch for nonblocking communication between devices.

The SC140e can run both DSP and control functions, which eliminates the need for an MCU in the baseband for Layer 2 and 3 processing and user interfacing, among others. The DSP handles GSM up to Edge Class 12 air interfaces and can also handle baseband processing for a Wi-Fi connection, GPS and Bluetooth.

Single platform solution

Motorola hopes to remove most of the current design limitations of affordable, advanced, full-featured mobile devices. By integrating multiple functions, mass-market mobile devices can be developed rapidly and at a lower cost on a smaller platform.

MXC allows OEMs to develop multiple product designs using a single platform. Products can range from entertainment to enterprise applications that currently carry as many as 300 to 400 components.

"To meet growing cost pressures, manufacturers have attempted to shrink the size of components. We believe we have a revolutionary innovation that will significantly impact mobile market growth," said Franz Fink, VP and GM of Motorola's Wireless and Mobile Systems Group. "MXC makes it possible for OEMs to bring highly-valued applications into the mass-market, enabling untapped value for suppliers, carriers, developers and consumers alike."

Motorola will sample products using the MXC architecture in the second half of this year.

- Dave Ledesma

Electronic Engineering Times - Asia

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