2 weeks after CEVA unveiled its new Wi-Fi IP Platforms that enable a broad range of connected devices, the Linley Group has published a review of the new products called: “CEVA Makes Waves in Wearables”.
For the full article in Linley’s Mobile Chip report click here.
To quote from the report: “CEVA has collaborated with two suppliers of RF/analog-front-end (RF/AFE) intellectual property (IP) to develop a family of licensable cores for wireless devices ranging from wearables and the Internet of Things (IoT) to smartphones and routers. The products combine RF/AFE hard IP with synthesizable digital basebands and media-access controllers (MACs) developed by RivieraWaves, a four-year-old French startup that CEVA acquired in 2014.
The wireless IP targets a variety of process nodes and foundries. One of the RF/AFEs is an 802.11ac/Bluetooth 4.2 combo from Catena, a Dutch communications-IP licensor that designed the hard macros for GlobalFoundries’ 28nm CMOS SLP process. That company also supplies the RF IP for TSMC’s 65nm technology. The 55nm version uses RF/AFEs from Maxscend, a Chinese IP vendor that supplies Bluetooth and Wi-Fi circuits for SMIC and UMC foundry customers. As with Catena, the Maxscend macros also enable Bluetooth 4.2 and Wi-Fi, but only up to 802.11n.
The CEVA/RivieraWaves basebands target three different power and performance levels, which the company calls Sense, Surf, and Stream.The Sense version is for wearables and low-power IoT devices, which will use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) as the radio link for low-bit-rate communications; 802.11n provides a more energy-efficient means of transferring large amounts of data. The Surf configuration adds support for dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi, targeting smartphones, tablets, and higher-power IoT devices such as Internet Protocol surveillance cameras. Wireless routers and other Wi-Fi-enabled consumer electronics can use Ceva/RivieraWaves’ highest-power Stream version, which adds 4×4 MIMO support.
The new products compete with Imagination’s Ensigma Whisper radio IP, but the Catena/RivieraWaves combination is the first announced in a 28nm process. Whisper lags further by lacking 802.11ac Wi-Fi support. CEVA has assembled a flexible set of hard macros and synthesizable basebands that enable designers to build a broad range of wireless devices”.