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Marvell touts first unified 3G phone platform

Posted: 17 Aug 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:WCDMA  TD-SCDMA  3G 

Marvell's unified 3G chip platform supporting both WCDMA and China's TD-SCDMA claims to bring universal connectivity and high-performance, low-cost processing power to mobile devices around the world.

The single unified 3G platform features new single-chip application and communications processor SoCs combined with Marvell's latest Wi-Fi + Bluetooth + FM radio + Near Field Communications (NFC) + GPS chip, RF transceivers and integrated PMIC solutions for both Time Division Synchronous Code Division Multiple Access (TD-SCDMA) and Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) markets.

With pin-to-pin compatibility, OEM can use the same printed circuit board (PCB) and ID designs, and operating system, application and multimedia software to address both the WCDMA and TD-SCDMA markets, which is expected to greatly simplify design cycles and reduce unnecessary cost. Engineering samples for the unified platform are available now.

"I believe Marvell's advanced, single unified dual-core 3G platform will deliver high-performance, affordable smartphones and tablets to the global mass market. In the new era of the 'Connected Lifestyle,' I believe it is important for mobile devices, such as tablets, to have a highly integrated single-chip solution, combining a high-performance application processor and an always connected modem with high-end graphics and HD video capabilities," said Weili Dai, co-founder of Marvell.

Designed specifically for the China 3G TD-SCDMA market, the 1.2GHz dual core ARM Cortex A9 PXA988 is the next generation of the highly ubiquitous PXA920 family of mobile processors that powers millions of smartphones in China. It is equipped with an integrated image signal processor (ISP), advanced graphics processing unit (GPU) that can achieve 192 million triangles per second (MT/s) and a breakthrough 533MHz LPDDR2 memory architecture for enhanced CPU and system performance. The PXA988 features a TD-HSPA+ R8 modem which supports dual-carrier aggregation and represents the next-generation of TD-SCDMA technology. The new advanced modem also supports Dual SIM Dual Talk, which enables users to activate two services on a single smartphone, and Downlink Dual Carrier (DLDC).

The PXA986 1.2GHz dual-core mobile processor was designed for WCDMA markets and is pin-to-pin compatible with the PXA988, effectively streamlining and reducing costs for OEM design cycles. Powered by the identical high-performance application processor sub-system as the PXA988, OEMs can seamlessly re-use their operating system and multimedia software across both mobile platforms to minimise design resources and decrease time to market. The PXA986 features a HSPA+ R7 modem, which supports 21.1Mbit/s download data-rate and 5.76Mbit/s upload data-rate, making it a viable solution for 4G smartphones. The PXA986 modem also supports critical features such as Dual SIM Dual Talk.

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