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31 January 2008


Axiom shipped 10 million CMOS PAs in 2007

Axiom Microdevices Inc of Irvine, CA, USA says that it shipped more than 10 million units of its AX502 quad-band GPRS CMOS power amplifier (PA) to handset makers during 2007.

Cellular handsets containing the PA, manufactured by Taiwanese foundry TSMC, are now available to consumers in Asia, Eastern and Western Europe, and Australia.

Axiom reported shipment of its first million units only in second-quarter 2007, then shipment at the rate of more than 1 million per month in August . “More customers are starting to enjoy the benefits of a simpler CMOS supply chain after years of being locked into proprietary process technologies with complex supply chains,” says CEO Brett Butler.

During 2007, the industry experienced a shortage of power amplifiers, impacting shipments of cellular handsets in China. “This tends to happen regularly due to the small-scale manufacturing capabilities of the leading PA suppliers relative to the silicon CMOS industry and TSMC, Axiom’s manufacturing partner,” adds Butler. “By leveraging mainstream CMOS-based process technologies, we have been able to insulate our customers from supply shortages through a very steep production ramp,” he claims.

“Axiom puts the power amplifier on a silicon CMOS cost curve through the use of economies of scale and supply chain simplicity that TSMC’s 0.13 micron RF-CMOS provides,” says Ken Chen, director mainstream technology marketing at TSMC.  

The PA is based on Axiom’s patented technology, which allows the use of a 0.13 micron silicon CMOS process to integrate all functions between transmitter output and transmit/receive switch. Power gain stages, small-signal control circuitry and 50-ohm matching are integrated on a single die, achieving what was previously only viable with devices manufactured in proprietary gallium arsenide process technology and assembled in multichip module packaging, claims Axiom.

The reliability of the quad-band GPRS PA has been proven through thousands of hours of life testing and high-volume shipments to top Asian handset manufacturers which have, to date, reported zero field failures, adds Axiom.

See related items:

Axiom shipping more than 1 million CMOS PAs monthly

Axiom expands into new headquarters, driven by accelerated adoption of CMOS PA

CMOS PA supplier Axiom appoints APAC sales director and Taiwan distributor

Axiom secures $25m to ramp CMOS-based cellular PA production