New MEMS White Paper

Download the latest Logitech white paper and learn more about MEMS processing technology and techniques

Download our CMP White Paper


FREE subscription
Subscribe for free to receive each issue of Semiconductor Today magazine and weekly news brief.


22 May 2007


TriQuint unveils ‘RF vision’ for simplifying connectivity in next-generation wireless networks

TriQuint Semiconductor of Hillsboro, OR, USA, which manufactures components and modules for communications applications, has unveiled its Network Business Unit’s global ‘RF vision’ to simplify connectivity in consumer voice, data, music and video for fixed and mobile environments.

“Customers want integrated devices for size- and cost-constrained applications, more packaged product options, especially for higher-frequency applications, and a simpler way to get those products,” says networks VP Brian Balut. “Our vision is about anticipating these needs and helping them increase productivity.”

“Our customers are developing next-generation products that will enable connectivity convergence,” he adds. “People want access when and where they choose, without service quality issues, hence the need for fixed and mobile wireless high-speed connectivity and the products that enable it. And they want it simple. Equipment makers have the same expectation.”

TriQuint’s strategy has three key elements:

1. TriQuint aims to simplify next-generation RF designs by using its GaAs, surface and bulk acoustic wave (SAW/BAW) technologies for chip-level device integration of multiple functions into more cost-effective modules. These can handle RF power, switching or filtering functions more efficiently while occupying less PC board area, says the firm. This, in turn, can simplify and speed device and equipment manufacturing, reducing time to market. TriQuint says that, for example, its commercial GaAs E/D pHEMT process already enables multi-band, die-level integration of amplifiers, switches, filters and low-noise amplifiers to support wireless LAN (WLAN) a, b, g, and n standards, benefitting new multiple-input, multiple-output (MIMO) designs that are shrinking network and CPE wideband wireless connections. “MIMO will mean smaller devices that will be easier to configure and use,” Balut says. “MIMO will also bring ‘diversity’ [‘cleaner’ signals]. This can virtually eliminate dropped calls, digital fade or data interruption that can now occur when downloading or uploading music, video or other data.

2. TriQuint is also to package more of its catalog of GaAs-based devices that were once only available as die-level monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) products (mainly to manufacturers equipped to handle non-packaged components). This provides greater access to a wider range of product manufacturing options, which can open up new markets as well as reducing costs or shortening time-to-market roll-outs, the firm claims.

“One consumer product market where we have already seen what the packaging revolution can do is in two-way satellite ground terminals used for providing high-speed Internet connections,” says Balut. “TriQuint has reduced the die surface area for the transmit power amplifier by more than 60% while continuing to improve performance. Products that were once difficult to package or required multiple die in a single package to achieve performance goals are now offered in a selection of packages, making for easier, less-specialized manufacturing. Die shrink has led to cost reductions.”

3. To enable greater productivity for RF engineers, TriQuint also aims to improve worldwide access to its products.  In its first step, in early May TriQuint said that it was simplifying its European coverage model by restructuring the distribution and sales channel, giving more convenient, local access to RF professionals who will augment TriQuint’s sales team.  Also, to enable designers and purchasing agents to more easily browse its RF product line-up, TriQuint will release its first Product Selection Guide on 5 June (in both printed and web-based form), covering virtually its whole portfolio of amplifier, filter and switch products (streamlining product access while leaving the option of custom solutions).

In support of its RF ‘Simplifying Connectivity’ vision, at the 2007 IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium (IMS) in Honolulu, Hawaii on 5-7 June, TriQuint will launch new products including new RF front-ends for WiMAX radio links, packaged heterostructure field-effect transistors (HFETs) for base-station and point-to-point radio connections, and packaged amplifiers for satellite ground terminals, along with newly packaged multi-function circuit (MFC) devices for next- generation point-to-point radios.

“TriQuint’s vision is to use our technology portfolio to build integrated RF front-end solutions for all fixed and mobile applications,” says Balut. “Highly integrated module products and discrete parts will simplify network solutions. Similar to the handset market, TriQuint’s network vision simplifies the design, manufacturing and purchasing processes,” he adds. “We’re packaging more devices than ever and we’re making our products more readily available.”

“These same trends are being realized in our military product lines,” he comments, “where more defense contractors than ever are expressing preferences for high-performing integrated and packaged devices.”

See related items:

TriQuint restructures European sales and distribution coverage

TriQuint results boosted by new top-five handset customer