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New eBook development platform based on TI's OMAP™ 3 technology speeds time to market, lowers costs for eBook manufacturers

Complete hardware and software solution reduces footprint by more than 200mm2, opens a new chapter for innovative, differentiated eBook products

PRNewswire-FirstCall
Jan 7, 2010

DALLAS, Jan. 7 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- With 2009 recognized as a watershed year in the evolution of the eBook market, manufacturers and developers are racing to meet consumer demands in this emerging segment. Answering the call for differentiated devices, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) today unveiled an OMAP™ 3 processor-based eBook development platform to help manufacturers and developers rapidly deploy their endless ideas to launch new, innovative eBook readers into consumers' hands. Touting a sleek electrophoretic display, TI's comprehensive platform includes the new OMAP3621 applications processor, WiLink™ 6.0 WiFi/Bluetooth®/FM "combo" connectivity solution, the new TPS6518x electronic paper display (EPD) power management IC, along with other TI analog solutions, and 3G modem connectivity support. See www.ti.com/ebookplatformpr for more details.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20100107/DA33237)

Driving new eBook experiences with TI's OMAP processor technology

The eBook development platform leverages TI's proven high-performance, low-power, 45nm OMAP 3 processor family which provides a robust, multitasking environment to simultaneously support applications which exercise the CPU, multimedia and graphics engines. The OMAP3621 processor will allow users to read their favorite eBook on an electrophoretic display, while simultaneously scanning the web on a second display for their next purchase. The processor boasts a high performance ARM® Cortex™-A8 CPU integrated with Imagination POWERVR3D graphics acceleration, and TI's proven C64x+DSP technology for multimedia acceleration. The OMAP3621 processor delivers an optimized peripheral set in a 12mmx12mm, 0.5mm ball pitch package with low power DDR memory support. The solution's smaller footprint enables sleek consumer designs while also delivering power and performance metrics that will change how consumers use eBooks in the future. The processor also provides added flexibility with its programmable architecture design. Leveraging the programmability of the OMAP platform enables customers to further differentiate their devices and stand out in the marketplace, giving their devices a unique look and feel.

Unique software-based display controller reduces footprint and cost

TI has employed a DSP-based software display controller, which drives E Ink's Vizplex® electrophoretic display on the eBook development platform to further streamline eBook product development. By implementing the display controller on the DSP, the Cortex-A8 can be used to its full potential, delivering an outstanding user experience. This software controller approach reduces the total silicon footprint by more than 200mm2 as well as provides savings on overall hardware cost. TI's overall system solution eliminates the need for:

  • Typical hardware EPD controller;
  • Dedicated external flash memory to store waveforms;
  • Dedicated SDRAM memory for the frame buffer; and
  • External temperature sensor by embedding it into TI's TPS6518x display power management IC

Optimized power management extends usability of eBook platform

TI's highly-optimized solutions are designed to fully address the needs of power-sensitive consumer device markets -- from eBooks to smartphones -- where battery life is just as critical as high performance. For example, TI's eBook development platform will allow more than 14,800 page turns on a six-inch E Ink screen using a slim 600mAh battery, representing a 50 percent improvement over similar solutions in the market today. With this in mind, consumers could read a 500-page book approximately 20 times on a single battery charge. Additionally, TI has optimized its connectivity solutions to run in a power conscious environment. The WiLink 6.0 solution uses an innovative low-power scanning architecture that continuously scans for available WLAN access points without impacting battery life. TI's system-level power optimization also extends idle times, allowing an eBook device to last nearly four weeks without needing to recharge.

"We are excited about the potential of the eBook market and how TI's technologies simplify eBook product design and enhance the overall user experience," said Elie Belmand, General Manager of TI's mobile consumer business. "Today, we are working with more than ten leading eBook OEM and ODMs to bring compelling, new eBook devices to store shelves in 2010. Our eBook platform provides a comprehensive and solid foundation to allow these manufacturers to shorten their product development cycle times while delivering innovative devices that will 'wow' consumers and help propel the eBook market forward."

Key features and benefits of TI's eBook development platform

            Features                               Benefits
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Proven digital and        -- ARM Cortex-A8-based 45nm OMAP3621 processor
    analog technology            with optimized peripheral set and small
    from TI inside               footprint enables sleek consumer designs
                                 and delivers unmatched performance with
                                 minimal power consumption
                              -- Flexible, programmable architecture design
                                 enabling differentiation
                              -- WiLink 6.0 solution integrates Bluetooth®,
                                 FM and WLAN technologies in a single-chip,
                                 reducing costs and size; advanced coexistence
                                 algorithms enables simultaneous Bluetooth®
                                 audio and WLAN data downloading; mobile
                                 industry's first to support 802.11n
                              -- New single-chip TPS6518x electronic paper
                                 display power management IC, with integrated
                                 display panel temperature sensor and unique
                                 ability to automate the setting of the VCOM
                                 voltage via I2C interface
                              -- Comprehensive hardware offering also includes
                                 full reference schematics and design layout
                                 files that reduces customer integration
                                 efforts and speeds up time-to-market
                              -- 3G modem support, 3 axis accelerometers, and
                                 other key TI power management and analog
                                 components included
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Support for various       -- Addresses multiple electronic display
    display screens and          technologies, including electrophoretic,
    technologies, several        electromechanical, electrowetting and thin
    dual-screen eBook            film transistor liquid crystal displays
    configurations, and       -- Supports dual screen designs, allowing
    range of eBook file          readers to view primary text in one screen
    formats                      and supplementary text, like footnotes,
                                 in the second
                              -- Enables a strong multitasking environment, as
                                 well as enhanced, innovative and smooth user
                                 interface support through 3D graphics
                                 acceleration
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Delivers complete         -- Supports Linux and Android operating systems
    software foundation       -- Hardware device drivers
                              -- Optimized power management
                              -- Software display controller
                              -- WLAN, Bluetooth and FM drivers
                              -- "Out of the box" connectivity through
                                 pre-validated use-cases and drivers optimized
                                 for power and throughput
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Portable form factor      -- Battery powered platform replicates a
                                 real-world eBook reader environment
                              -- Portable design supports all typical eBook
                                 display sizes
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Supports new and          -- OMAP platform delivers support for advanced
    unique use cases             multimedia features including EPD and
                                 color screens, as well as high quality video
                                 as future eBook designs advance
                              -- Feature rich, text-to-speech (TTS) capability
                              -- FM transmit allows user to stream audio eBook
                                 or TTS to car radio while driving
                              -- FM receive allows user to listen to radio
                                 while reading
                              -- Bluetooth enables user to stream audio eBook
                                 or radio to Bluetooth headset or car radio
                                 while driving

Availability

The OMAP3621 processor, designed for high-volume consumer electronics OEMs and ODMs, is currently sampling. The eBook development platform is available today for high-volume eBook manufacturers. These solutions are not available through distributors. Samples of the TPS6518x can be ordered via www.ti.com/tps65180-pr. Volume production is expected in the first quarter.

Find out more about the eBook Development Platform by visiting the links below:

TI's eBook development platform drives partner successes

"We have been impressed by the speed and commitment of TI's team in the development of their disruptive eBook solution. On top of a deep understanding of the specific aspects and requirements of an eBook reading device, TI with its development platform would allow us to build an eBook device in only few months," said Michael Dahan, co-founder, BooKeen

"Texas Instruments has been a longstanding strategic partner for us. We have benefitted from TI's technology leadership and partnership program in building the next-generation content experience on our eReader devices," said Gopal Krishnan, Chairman, Ninestars Information Technologies Limited

"We are excited by the promise of TI's technology and the innovation it will drive in the ePaper market," said Sriram Peruvemba, Vice President of Marketing at E Ink. "Our mutual customers in the eBook market will benefit from enhanced features, greater flexibility, reduced component count and lower system costs."

"By working closely with TI we are able to deliver a compact and robust platform," said Dr. CT Liu, AUO's Senior Vice President and General Manager of Consumer Product Display Business Group, who is also the Chairman of SiPix Imaging Inc. "This reference design will enable our customers to deliver highly integrated system boards with competitive prices."

"As we embark on new advancements in the display technology market, the LiquaVista team is thrilled to work with TI to bring bright, colorful full video images to eReaders and other mobile devices," said Guy Demuynck, CEO, LiquaVista. "TI's unique eBook development platform and OMAP 3 processors, combined with our innovative display capabilities, will introduce a whole new level of functional freedom for consumers across the world."

"Through collaboration with TI, Loquendo fully optimized its renowned Embedded TTS and ASR technologies for TI's eBook development platform," said Silvio Nasi, Embedded Sales Director, Loquendo. "This platform provides the perfect framework for advanced multimedia features that our multilingual TTS and ASR technologies bring powerfully to life on eBook devices, by means of expressive voices and large-vocabulary speech recognition."

"Sensitive Object is excited by the opportunity to collaborate with TI to bring our acoustic innovative touch technology to new markets. Working together allows us to leverage TI's market expertise and position to further extend our disruptive acoustic touch technology into various end equipments, ranging from mobile to consumer products," Philippe Gounine, chief sales officer, Sensitive Object.

About Texas Instruments

Texas Instruments (NYSE: TXN) helps customers solve problems and develop new electronics that make the world smarter, healthier, safer, greener and more fun. A global semiconductor company, TI innovates through manufacturing, design and sales operations in more than 30 countries. For more information, go to www.ti.com.

Trademarks

OMAP and WiLink are trademarks of Texas Instruments Inc. All other registered trademarks and trademarks belong to their respective owners.

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SOURCE: Texas Instruments Incorporated

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