Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Ralink launches first ever Bluetooth 4.0 “Low Energy” certified single chip 802.11n + BT 4.0 combo for PC market

COMPUTEX TAIPEI 2011, TAIPEI, TAIWAN: Ralink Technology Corp. announced availability of the RT3290LE, the world’s first and only single chip 802.11n plus Bluetooth 4.0 solution designed for mobile PCs. The RT3290LE combines the unprecedented Wi-Fi/Bluetooth coexistence and industry-leading performance of Ralink’s RT3290 with the energy efficiency of the new Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy (LE) specification.

As the first single-chip LE compliant device for PCs on the market, Ralink’s RT3290LE offers PC makers the opportunity to create the ideal central hub for the new crop of ultra-mobile devices and applications for health care, sports and fitness, security and entertainment made possible by the Bluetooth SIG’s new LE specification.

“Ralink is continuing to enable the wireless revolution with a series of industry firsts and breakthroughs including the first single chip 802.11n Half MiniCard, the first 802.11n chip with OptiLink technology for better wireless coverage and now the first BT4.0 Low Energy certified 11n Bluetooth combo for the PC market,” said Paul Lin, General Manager of Ralink’s Wireless Business Unit. “As wireless connectivity moves into ever smaller and more varied devices, PCs will remain the preferred centralized platform for managing and offering feature support for the new array of specialized low energy devices. The RT3290LE represents the first chance for PC makers to begin capitalizing on this opportunity.”

According to the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), LE technology is a critical evolution in Bluetooth wireless technology that will enable a plethora of new applications for monitoring patient health, enhancing sports and fitness, providing mobile security and augmenting home entertainment. This latest enhancement to the Bluetooth Core Specification creates new opportunities for developers and manufacturers of Bluetooth enabled devices and applications, bringing to life entirely new markets for devices that need to be low cost and operate with low power wireless connectivity.

The RT3290LE, as with other Ralink single chip solutions, contains all components necessary for both 802.11n and Bluetooth functionality on a single die. The RT3290LE’s Bluetooth 4.0 LE compliance allows it to offer best in class performance while enabling Bluetooth connectivity to sensors and devices powered by coin battery. With the single interface requirements of a single-chip format, OEMs also benefit from reduced manufacturing costs, ease of assembly, faster testing, and simpler inventory control.

The RT3290LE single-chip combo solution uses Ralink’s sophisticated coexistence algorithm for improved harmony between co-located WLAN and Bluetooth radios. With real-time WLAN and Bluetooth transmissions balancing to reduce interference, and auto-detection of nearby Wi-Fi Access Points, the new chip is capable of WLAN throughput more than 80 percent faster than competing WLAN plus Bluetooth combo devices for PCs while using less power.

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