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ST intros low-cost satellite STB decoder

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CIOL Bureau
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NEW DELHI: Supplier of silicon chips for set-top boxes (STB) STMicroelectronics today announced a new low-cost satellite STB receiver/decoder chip — the STI5188 — intended for high-volume free-to-air markets in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, South America and Europe.

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This device combines the functions of STV0288 DVB-S receiver and the STM5118 mass-market STB decoder, to create a product that will enable the manufacture of digital receivers competing in cost with analog sets.

ST said in a statement that the STI5188 is the first low-cost decoder for the STB market to be implemented in 90nm process technology.

The STI5188 integrates the QPSK (Quadrature-Phase-Shift-Keying) demodulator, together with audio DACs and VCXO, allowing manufacturers to cut their total BOM cost and to greatly simplify board design and assembly; PCB layout is also helped by a small 20x20mm QFP package.

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The integrated audio DACs offer a direct connection to the TV input, making further savings compared to earlier generation and competitive products. The use of serial Flash memory in the new device has reduced the number of I/O lines required and allowed the package size to be smaller — PCB routing is also simplified, with less chance of EMI problems.

System software runs on a high-performance embedded ST20 32-bit RISC CPU core — the dominant CPU in the STB Market — operating at 200MHz. A dedicated 2D graphics engine allows the creation of a rich user interface (UI), including mosaic channel presentation and strong graphics content.

ST's ST20-based reference designs and development support offer a full turnkey solution, from hardware to UI, simplifying product design and reducing the time to market.

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“This integration of two successful and high-performance devices in the free-to-air satellite market will reduce costs for manufacturers, and encourage the digital transition in countries where equipment price has so far been a problem,” said Christos Lagomichos, group vice-president and general manager of ST's Home Entertainment Group. “Embedded features such as the QPSK demodulator and the use of serial Flash will make life easier for designers and further cut production costs.”

Available in a 176-pin 20x20mm QFP package, engineering samples of the STI5188 have already been shipped to key customers, with volume production planned for the end of Q2 2006.

Pricing is $4.50 for quantities of 500k units.

© CyberMedia News

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