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Voice activation sol'n cuts power dissipation in mobiles

Posted: 24 Feb 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Cadence Design Systems  Sensory  voice activation  DSP  smartphone 

Cadence Design Systems Inc. has released an ultra-low power DSP-based voice activation solution that the company said is an ideal complement to other always-on functions such as sensor fusion-enabled context awareness and face activation. Using up less than 17uW when implemented in a 28nm low-power process, the Cadence Tensilica HiFi Mini Audio/Voice DSP IP running the Sensory TrulyHandsfree solution consumes 33 percent less power than the previous version and forms an ideal offload solution for application processors in smartphones, tablets, PCs, TVs, set-top boxes, and other devices and appliances that need always-on capabilities, stated the firms.

"A growing number of companies are employing always-on voice activation in their devices to provide a simplified and more natural hands-free user interface," stated Larry Przywara, Cadence's director of audio/voice IP marketing. "By reducing the power an additional 33 percent, we're continuing to extend our technology leadership with ultra-low power consumption, making HiFi Mini with Sensory's TrulyHandsfree technology an obvious solution."

"Sensory's TrulyHandsfree solution provides the world's highest accuracy in real-world conditions for always-listening wakeup triggers and command sets. By working with Cadence and taking full advantage of the HiFi Mini DSP architecture, we were able to optimize our software to further drop the power in basic detection mode. This includes trigger to search, user-defined triggers, speaker verification and identification, which make TrulyHandsfree a unique and market-proven solution," stated Bill Teasley, VP of engineering at Sensory.

The Tensilica HiFi Mini Audio/Voice DSP IP core is optimized for the lowest power consumption always-on listening. It was designed to use compact 40bit encoding, and it adds efficient 16bit instructions for voice and audio codecs for maximum efficiency. As part of the HiFi family of DSPs, the IP core features more than 125 software packages that have been ported to the HiFi architecture by Cadence and more than 55 partners.

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