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Frontier Silicon Previews World’s Most Integrated Digital Radio Chip
|By Business Wire
|April 11, 2014 08:00 PM EDT
Frontier Silicon is previewing Kino 4, its next generation digital radio
chip, at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair (13-16th April, 2014).
Kino 4 is a single chip solution, which integrates four previously
separate chips, to deliver significant improvements in performance, cost
and power consumption. This new chip builds on the performance and
reliability standards of earlier generations of the Kino chip series -
the world’s best-selling digital radio ICs (over 20 million units sold).
Until now, the alternative, less efficient approach to integration has
been to place the various processing blocks on individual pieces of
silicon and then to combine them into a single chip package
(system-in-package). Uniquely for a digital radio solution, Kino 4
combines RF, baseband, application processor, audio decode and DAC
functionality on a single piece of silicon – with no requirement for
external MCU, DAC or tuner. This innovative approach is enabling several
power consumption 50% lower than Kino 3
patent pending features for improved user experience, e.g.
significantly faster scan times
smaller form-factor – with potential to be deployed in smartphones
new tools to accelerate development times for manufacturers.
Kino 4 is designed to power all major categories of consumer digital
radio devices. Key areas of focus include portable radios (with entry
level models retailing at under $30), radio receivers with Bluetooth
connectivity, multi-function devices (e.g. clock radios, docks and home
audio systems) and a wide range of automotive aftermarket products
(especially, automotive adapters).
The Kino 4 chip will also enable the next generation of hybrid or smart
radios, which combine broadcast and IP return path functionality.
The first release of Kino 4 will support the DAB family of standards.
Longer term, the chip has the capability to support other global
standards, including HD Radio™ and DRM.
Kino 4 will meet all technology requirements of the UK’s Digital Tick
minimum specifications for both domestic and automotive digital radio
Kino 4 samples will be available to selected customers in Q2 2014. A
demonstration of the new solution will be available in Frontier’s
exclusive HKEF Spring Edition demo suite.
Anthony Sethill, CEO Frontier Silicon, said: “Digital radio is
making enormous advances around the world as broadcasters, regulators
and policy makers realise the significant benefits that the platform
offers. As the market matures, it is critical that technology solutions
continue to drive this progress.
“Kino 4 builds on ten years of development work by Frontier Silicon. The
benefits offered by this latest generation chip, both to manufacturers
and end users, are significant. In addition to lower costs and greatly
reduced power consumption, our focus has been on improving performance
whilst retaining the reliability that is a hallmark of Frontier’s
“Currently, there are over 300 consumer digital radio models on the
market – a significant majority powered by Frontier solutions. Our aim
with Kino 4 is to greatly increase this number – in particular, for
entry level portable radios, multi-function radio devices and automotive
“In the coming years, we expect to see a sharp growth in broadcasters’
development of smart radio services (combining broadcast and IP
connectivity). Kino 4 will help accelerate this growth by enabling
standalone radios and multi-function devices to provide this new
About Frontier Silicon Limited
Frontier Silicon is the world’s leading supplier of integrated circuits
and modules for Digital Radio and Connected Audio products. Frontier
Silicon is part of the Toumaz Group, a pioneer in low-power wireless
semiconductor and software technologies for the consumer audio and
wireless healthcare markets.
Frontier Silicon’s audio products offer solutions for DAB/DAB+, Internet
Radio and Connected Audio - from silicon through software to
production-ready platform designs.
Customers supplied by Frontier Silicon include Argon, Bang & Olufsen,
Bose, Bush, Denon, Dual, Geneva, Goodmans, Grundig, Hama, harman/kardon,
Hitachi, JVC, Magic Box, NAD, Onkyo, Panasonic, Philips, Pinell,
Pioneer, Pure, Revo, Roberts, Ruark Audio, Sangean, Sanyo, Sharp, Sony,
TEAC, TechniSat, Tivoli Audio and Yamaha.
Frontier Silicon is a trademark or registered trademark of Frontier
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