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Pawlowski said the SRAM market also is coming under pressure because of the ability to extend DRAM technology. He said Micron has research underway that may allow DRAM refresh rates to be as long as two to four weeks, which compares with about 60 milliseconds now.

E2K-X4ME1_Datasheet PDF

Pawlowski said the SRAM market also is coming under pressure because of the ability to extend DRAM technology. He said Micron has research underway that may allow DRAM refresh rates to be as long as two to four weeks, which compares with about 60 milliseconds now.

The alliance will target the cdma2000 1X and 1xEV-DV (1x Evolution for Data and Voice) standards. STMicro (Geneva) and TI (Dallas) will sell the chipset to cellular phone handset manufacturers worldwide.

Laying down the gauntlet to CDMA pioneer Qualcomm Inc. (San Diego), the partners said their alliance will provide handset manufacturers with a time-to-market advantage for future cdma2000 1xEV-DV handsets with the industry's first complete chipset for this market.”

E2K-X4ME1_Datasheet PDF

Nokia currently uses the technology in its cdma2000 1X phones, and the companies said following generations of the technology will be used in Nokia-specific chipsets for future 1xEV-DV handsets.”

Sampling of the cdma2000 1X chipset is expected next quarter.

The chipset will be complete, including RF, analog baseband/power management, digital baseband, associated protocol software and reference designs. Development and testing tools will be available from both companies for their respective ICs.

E2K-X4ME1_Datasheet PDF

Currently, TI is the largest supplier of baseband silicon, while STMicro supplies Nokia with much of its RF and analog silicon.

In addition to the CDMA chipset solutions, STMicro and TI will make available their complementary wireless technologies,” including applications processors which support the OMAPI standard, wireless LAN, Bluetooth, and GPS technology. STM will offer its flash memory products as an option to complement the chipset.”

E2K-X4ME1_Datasheet PDF

The partners pledged they will support open hardware interfaces, including interfaces to RF subsystems and application processors. An open Application Programming Interface (API) will facilitate customization of products and accelerate the proliferation of easily portable applications,” the companies said in a joint press release.

Market research firm In-Stat/MDR (Phoenix) estimates the value of CDMA baseband silicon at $1.8 billion this year. When the other components that go into a CDMA handset are included, such as memory, RF and others, the value of CDMA silicon shipped this year increases to $4.5 billion, senior analyst Allen Nogee said.

What if the designers of the original communications system had employed interfaces to decouple the system? They may have defined an interface to the call switch that was not hardware implementation dependent (figure-2). The core communications system logic (complexity of that subsystem is not represented above) would use the CallSwitch interface to connect the parties that need to be connected. The original hardware control software is implemented to that interface. Later the IP Based Switch Implementation, and all the versions in between, could also be built to the same interface. The interface is likely to evolved, but the core logic investment could be better protected by not intertwining it with the specific hardware implementation.

Notice the direction of the dependencies. Both the core logic and the specific implementations depend on the CallSwitch interface class. We are using the dependency inversion principle. Instead of having high level logic depending on details, both the details and high level logic depend on the interfaces.

This design also adheres to the Open-Closed Principle. This principle states that Software entities (classes, modules, functions, etc.) should be open for extension, but closed for modification.This principle states that Software entities (classes, modules, functions, etc.) should be open for extension, but closed for modification. The Communication System Core Logic can be extended but does not need to be modified for different kinds of CallSwitches. We can add the IP Based Switch Implementation without changing the Communication System Core Logic.

How is Variation Dealt with Now?

If you develop embedded software it's no news to you that hardware is ever changing. Parts become obsolete. Cost reduction efforts result in new designs. Customers want new features that result in a revision of the hardware design.

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