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Broadcom delivers 40nm NFC chip

Mon, 09/26/2011 - 8:20am
Andrew Berg, Wireless Week

Wireless and wired semiconductor provider Broadcom today unveiled a new family of 40nm NFC chips that the company says are more power efficient and include additional functionality.

Craig Ochikubo, vice president and general manager of wireless personal area networks for Broadcom, says the new Broadcom BCM2079x uses 90 percent less power and 40 percent fewer components with a 40 percent smaller board area than other chips on the market.

The NFC controllers within the chip are platform agnostic, with support for multiple secure elements or SIM cards – or both at the same time. In addition, Broadcom's Maestro middleware allows new NFC applications to use Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities in the device to promote new ways for devices to interface and share media.

Ochikubo says that while Broadcom sees the NFC space being driven primarily by mobile payments, the technology also could be implemented in ways that revolutionize how consumers use their devices.

"These solutions provide the features and performance that enable disruptive innovation that will reshape the mobile consumer experience," he says. "Our leadership and proficiency in wireless connectivity influenced the architecture of these new chips to meet the performance required by OEMs, allowing them to more easily add NFC to their designs."

Ochikubo says the proliferation of NFC could be implemented in things like connected TVs, appliances, and even automobiles to more easily connect them with a person's mobile device.

Broadcom is already sending the chip out to OEMs for trials. Ochikubo says devices with the new chip should start shipping in the first half of 2012.

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