CEVA recently launched two new power- and cost-optimised communication processors which system designers have been demanding to implement a broad range of Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) applications. Target applications of the processors include wearalone wearables, smart grid, surveillance systems, asset tracking, remote monitoring systems, connected cars and smart utilities.
The CEVA-XC architecture has two new vector processors, CEVA-XC5 and CEVA-XC8 DSP, which are its smallest and most power-efficient members. Designed to deliver exceptional efficiency in most devices with cost, power, and die constraints, the processors support the full range of emerging cellular protocols such as LTE MTC Cat-1, Cat-0 or Cat-M, as well as the suite of Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) standards such as Lora, SigFox and Ingenu. In addition, the processors are highly optimized to deal with other IoT-related communication standards, including Wi-Fi 802.11n, PLC, 802.15.4g, ZigBee/Thread, GNSS or any emerging protocols such as NB-IoT and Wi-Fi 802.11ah.
According to Linley Gwennap, principal analyst at The Linley Group, the two new processors have made CEVA to leverage its industry-leading position in communications DSPs to deliver the small die size and high power efficiency that designers need for IoT and other applications.
The exemplary power efficiency is due to the improvements in the CEVA-XC architecture that have resulted in a 20% memory size reduction and the capability to allow multiple PHYs and MACs to run concurrently on the same processor with much reduced overhead.
The CEVA-XC5 DSP is 40% smaller than any previous generation CEVA-XC processor and deploys an IoT-optimized Power Scaling Unit (PSU) which enables it to achieve up to 70 per cent lower dynamic power consumption. This power reduction is a result of specialized elements within the PSU which allow the DSPs to take advantage of new Cat-0 and Cat-M features such as Power Saving Mode (PSM) and long DRX.
As stated by Michael Boukaya, vice president and general manager, Wireless Business Unit at CEVA, “The introduction of our CEVA-XC5 and CEVA-XC8 DSPs enables our customers to develop modems for IoT and M2M applications with outstanding power and area characteristics and a very long service life. These latest additions to the CEVA-XC family build on our long heritage with DSPs for communication processing and mark another important step in our strategy to enable everything ‘smart and connected’.”
The new DSPs come equipped with complete DSP, LTE and legacy cellular software libraries, as well as a unified software development environment. The processors are available for licensing today and are already in design for low power wireless platforms.