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Entropic fields broadband chip for China

Posted: 18 Jun 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:WiMAX platform? China CPE apps? broadband access chip?

With China in mind, Entropic Communications Inc. will release a second-generation broadband access client chip aimed at low-cost customer-premises equipment, such as simple access points, home gateways and advanced routers.

The release comes on the heels of Entropic's signing in April of a definitive agreement to acquire RF Magic Inc., a developer of microtuners for DTV. The acquisition expands Entropic's offerings to include a range of DTV standards, extending its reach beyond its identification with the Multimedia over Coax Alliance.

With the EN3230 chip, Entropic sees China as its best regional bet for ramping up its access business. While the company also does business in Japan and South Korea, the China market is the world's second largest for cable. And in China, an increasing number of operators are running out fiber to large apartment complexes.

During the China Content Broadcasting Network conference in Beijing in April, Entropic showed off early design wins for the EN3230 with box manufacturers AsiaCom and Galaxy Technology. It hopes more wins will come now that it has halved the BOMs cost from the previous-generation chip, the EN3030.

An EN3230-based client offers 100Mbps to enable multiple streams of high-definition video, video-on-demand, IPTV and voice and data over a single coaxial network. In China, its early use will likely focus on data delivery, followed by video-on-demand.

As for the acquisition, Entropic president and CEO Patrick Henry has become CEO of the merged company, while RF Magic president and CEO Mark Foley has become chief operating officer. Terms of the all-stock transaction between the two privately held companies were not disclosed.

In addition to tuners for terrestrial over-the-air, satellite and DVB-C cable TVs, RF Magic has designed a line of channel-stacking switches and offers customer-premises ICs for WiMAX access platforms.

Multiple streams on one network. EN 3230 delivers data, video over coax net.

Entropic's EN3230 sells for $20 in batches of 10,000. Pricing is negotiable as volumes increase. The device is offered in a 19-by-19mm 324-PBGA package. The EN3230 is supported by the EN93230MDK manufacturing development kit.

- Mike Clendenin, Loring Wirbel
EE Times

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