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Radical GPS Solution from Maxim

SUNNYVALE, CA -Maxim Integrated Products (NASDAQ: MXIM) creates a new, unconventional GPS solution based on its GPS front-end receiver IC combined with Royal Philips Electronics' innovative Spot GPS software. Utilization of the system's application processor eliminates the need for a costly, bulky baseband IC. The highly integrated and flexible RF IC maximizes the reuse of the existing system resources, such as the reference clock, and offers a low BOM count for further size and cost savings.

The Benefits of this GPS Solution
The Maxim GPS solution significantly reduces cost, power consumption, and size compared to other hardware-based, multichip GPS chipsets in the marketplace. In large volumes this results in a sub-$4 GPS solution, setting an all-new price-performance record.

Operating in both autonomous (unassisted) and assisted modes, the software solution can provide fixes every second for applications such as automotive tracking. The algorithm can also be tuned to suit pedestrian or indoor use, enabling an optimized GPS solution for mobile products such as cellular phones, PDAs, digital cameras, MP3 players, laptops, and portable DVD players.

Dr. Saeed Navid, Vice President at Maxim Integrated Products, added: "We are very excited about this breakthrough technology. Until today, mass deployment of location technology in mobile devices was hindered by the high cost, power consumption, and size of GPS implementation." Commenting on the market's principal requirement for next-generation technology, Navid continued, "By combining Maxim's expertise in RF IC design and manufacturing with Philips's innovative software GPS technology, we are responding to the demanding market requirements for mobile and portable applications."

Mr. Hans Streng, CEO of Philips Software, commented, "We are extremely happy to be going to market with Maxim's high-performance front-end and excited about radically redefining the price-performance benchmark for GPS."

Initial Application Possibilities
The first product based on this GPS solution is an optimized reference design for an USB accessory for laptops. The reference design enables a range of low-cost/high-performance GPS add-ons. In its simplest form, this could be a GPS stick that turns a laptop into a large-screen navigation device. Another application could be an USB GPS accessory for a smartphone with USB OTG (On-the-Go) connectivity. This small, low-power design, moreover, can be combined with other applications such as an USB memory drive or USB MP3-GPS combination.

The Hardware/Software Interaction The complete reference design is based on Maxim's MAX2741 GPS receiver front-end with an on-chip LNA, an adaptive AGC, and VCO. In addition, the MAX2741 has an integrated 1-, 2-, or 3-bit ADC and supports 2MHz to 26MHz reference frequencies with a 2.7V to 3.0V supply voltage.

The MAX2741 is available now with a number of design-ins underway. An USB-based evaluation kit from the Company will help speed designs.

The Philips Spot software is 600Kb of code written in ANSI C, which can be ported to, and run on any standard processor, such as ARM, Intel Xscale® or TI-OMAP. The software takes the output of the GPS front-end receiver and locates the satellites. It then downloads the satellite ephemeris and, using a new proprietary technique, performs signal processing to extract the satellites' signals. The result is an efficiently generated position fix.

Jueves, 16 Junio, 2005 - 08:02
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