Press Release Summary:
Single-chip BluetoothÂ® audio solution, BCM2044S, leverages ROM-based architecture to implement SmartAudio(TM) noise and echo reduction algorithms. This technology distinguishes voice from background noise to optimize audio conversation clarity. While single-chip solution is designed for use in headsets, product is also available as BCM92044 reference design, which provides headset OEMs with 2-layer PCB that includes Bluetooth software and development tools.
Original Press Release:
Broadcom Announces World's First Bluetooth® Headset Solution with Noise Cancellation that Enables Premium Quality at Mass Market Prices
New ROM-Based Solution Features Technology that Distinguishes Voice from Background Noise to Boost Audio Conversation Clarity
IRVINE, Calif., Nov. 5 -- Broadcom Corporation (NASDAQ:BRCM), a global leader in semiconductors for wired and wireless communications, today introduced the industry's first Bluetooth(R) audio solution to offer noise and echo suppression without expensive flash memory and digital signal processing (DSP) components, resulting in significantly improved audio quality in mass market Bluetooth headsets. Expanding the Broadcom(R) Bluetooth audio platform, the new single-chip ROM-based device features advanced audio enhancement technology in a small, low cost package that will help to drive cost effective, stylish headset designs based on Bluetooth technology.
Audio devices, such as headsets, represent the second largest segment of the Bluetooth market (following mobile handsets). As more countries, states and cities enact hands-free legislation, the number of basic headsets (also known as mono headsets) will continue to increase -- with an estimated 80 million expected to be sold in 2007*. Many of these headsets will be used for hands-free connectivity in cars, where audio quality and noise cancellation are essential. In the past, noise and echo suppression algorithms have been typically limited to high-end headsets that require additional components and are more expensive to manufacture.
Announced today is the Broadcom BCM2044S headset solution that leverages a ROM-based architecture to implement its unique SmartAudio(TM) noise and echo reduction algorithms, enhancing audio quality without adding additional costly components. This technology potentially reduces the bill of materials (BOM) cost by 40 percent, enabling OEMs to offer high-end audio capabilities at the same cost as basic headsets. In addition, the BCM2044S is footprint-compatible with the predecessor Broadcom BCM2044, enabling OEM customers to cost effectively offer multi-tiered product lines based on a common hardware platform.
"To expand upon the leadership we've built in other Bluetooth segments, Broadcom is delivering revolutionary solutions that push the boundaries of performance and cost for wireless headsets and other audio devices," said Scott Bibaud, Vice President and General Manager of Broadcom's Wireless Personal Area Networking line of business. "Rounding out our new family of audio solutions, the BCM2044S and related reference design enable OEMs to differentiate their headset offerings with superior features, while reducing BOM and manufacturing costs to protect their bottom lines."
Broadcom SmartAudio technology is based on the company's extensive experience in processing voice, video and data traffic in enterprise networking and telecommunications infrastructure applications. It intelligently analyzes digital audio streams within the Bluetooth headset, differentiating between voice and non-voice characteristics while eliminating background noise to deliver a clearer, more satisfying voice conversation. SmartAudio technology also automatically increases the volume on the headset when the user walks into a noisy environment, intelligently adjusting the output to maximize comfort for the headset user without the need to touch any buttons.
New Reference Design Further Reduces Cost
Broadcom also announced today its BCM92044 reference design that provides headset OEMs with a greatly reduced 2-layer printed circuit board (PCB), versus alternative solutions that require PCBs with four or six layers. Answering the requirements of headset manufacturers for smaller, simpler products, Broadcom's BCM92044 reference design supports extremely small audio devices and requires about 30 percent fewer external components when compared to competing solutions. The reference design includes Broadcom's industry-leading Bluetooth software, along with essential development tools to accelerate time-to-market for customer products. Broadcom also conducts extensive interoperability testing with other Bluetooth devices, and to date, the BCM92044 reference design has been validated with over 200 Bluetooth devices and that list continues to grow.
Broadcom's Bluetooth Product Family
Having shipped hundreds of millions of Bluetooth products, Broadcom offers the most complete family of Bluetooth silicon and software solutions for mobile phones, PCs, wireless headphones and headsets, peripherals, gaming and other applications. Broadcom's Bluetooth solutions are widely recognized in the industry as the most broadly deployed and feature-rich solutions. The world's largest manufacturers of consumer electronics, mobile phones and personal computer products rely on Broadcom Bluetooth technology to provide their customers with a unique, intuitive and rich user experience increasingly free of wires and cables.
Availability and Pricing
The BCM2044S single-chip solution and BCM92044 reference design are sampling to early access customers. Pricing is available upon request.
Broadcom Corporation is a major technology innovator and global leader in semiconductors for wired and wireless communications. Broadcom products enable the delivery of voice, video, data and multimedia to and throughout the home, the office and the mobile environment. We provide the industry's broadest portfolio of state-of-the-art, system-on-a-chip and software solutions to manufacturers of computing and networking equipment, digital entertainment and broadband access products, and mobile devices. These solutions support our core mission: Connecting everything(R).
Broadcom is one of the world's largest fabless semiconductor companies, with 2006 revenue of $3.67 billion, and holds over 2,300 U.S. and 1,000 foreign patents, more than 7,100 additional pending patent applications, and one of the broadest intellectual property portfolios addressing both wired and wireless transmission of voice, video and data.
Broadcom is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and has offices and research facilities in North America, Asia and Europe. Broadcom may be contacted at +1.949.926.5000 or at http://www.broadcom.com/.
Broadcom(R), the pulse logo, Connecting everything(R), the Connecting everything logo and SmartAudio(TM) are among the trademarks of Broadcom Corporation and/or its affiliates in the United States, certain other countries and/or the EU. Bluetooth(R) is a trademark of Bluetooth SIG Inc. Any other trademarks or trade names mentioned are the property of their respective owners.
*According to IMS Research