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Ultra-low-power NFC SoC boasts 50% smaller footprint

Posted: 10 Dec 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:NFC  communication  NCI  mobile 

Qualcomm Atheros Inc. introduced a new ultra-low power NFC SoC that will enable mobile devices with contactless communications and data exchange, including next-generation mobile payments.

The QCA1990 claims to be the industry's smallest, ultra-low power SoC with an overall footprint that is 50 per cent smaller than current NFC chips available in the market. When paired with Qualcomm Atheros' WCN3680 1-stream, dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi/Bluetooth 4.0/FM chip, the QCA1990 will enable seamless user experiences in the mobile, computing and consumer electronics markets, according to the company.

The QCA1990 offers platform-level integration with the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 and next-generation processors and modems to seamlessly enable NFC on Qualcomm's OEM partner smartphones and tablets. The QCA1990 software stack complies with the NFC Forum Controller Interface (NCI) and is fully integrated to enable faster time-to-market for customers. Its state-of-the-art radio frequency (RF) performance exceeds requirements established by EMVCo and the NFC Forum. With supported antenna form factors that are eight times smaller than current market offerings, QCA1990 offers significant cost savings for OEMs to integrate NFC at a significantly lower price point.

The QCA1990 is said to employ extremely low-power polling algorithms to prolong battery life while also offering a wide range of secure element options, both embedded and SIM-based, while supporting multiple secure elements concurrently, including support for a dual-SIM configuration.

The QCA1990 is pre-tested to meet the requirements from payment schemes, mobile operators and OEMs globally. The QCA1990 will sample to customers starting in the first quarter of 2013, with commercial designs with leading OEMs expected in the third quarter of 2013.





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