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NXP powers ahead with programmable LTE modem

LONDON — NXP Semiconductors (Eindhoven, the Netherlands) is set to demonstrate at next month's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona a multi-mode, programmable LTE modem that will be the basis of a software defined radio system from the company.

The modem, built round NXP's Embedded Vector Processor (EVP), will have theoretical data rates of 150 Mbits/second on the downlink and a third of this on the uplink. It complies with the 3GPP R8 radio specification for LTE and also supports UMTS (3G) /EDGE/GPRS/GSM multi-mode capability.

NXP is targeting the modem at the handsets market but also plans to optimize the design for next generation laptops, Internet tablets and a new breed of ultra-mobile PCs.

The company says the differentiating value of the EVP-based modem architecture is the ability to support multi-standard baseband processing with negligible area and power penalties.

The specifications for LTE are still being finalized, but NXP stresses its multi standard approach with the highly-parallel EVP providing the computational resources for demanding MIMO and OFDM modem functionality will allow designers to upgrade easily as the standard is fixed.

It adds the software programmable platform will enable OEMs to develop products quickly with on-the-fly changes to the core behavior of the modem during the ramp-up phase of the technology.

“This is the first cellular system solution to use NXP's breakthrough EVP technology to support the entire GSM family of standards, right through to LTE,” said Marc Cetto, Executive Vice President & General Manager, Business Unit Mobile and Personal, NXP Semiconductors.

Cetto adds the modem was defined in close partnership with global operators, OEMs and infrastructure vendors. “Using a software-defined radio approach, we can create silicon and system platforms that evolve as quickly as the industry does.”

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