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New Antenna-Tuning Circuit from STMicroelectronics Boosts LTE Smartphone Performance

Users benefit from stronger reception, fewer dropped calls,faster downloads, and longer battery life
Geneva /

STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, has announced that its latest Antenna-Tuning Circuit, the STHVDAC-253M, was selected to control the smart antenna-tuning function in an exciting new LTE smartphone that is being launched by a large Asian manufacturer at Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona.

Smart Antenna Tuning in mobile phones makes the radio-frequency transmission and reception almost insensitive to external conditions, which brings multiple benefits to the user, including stronger signal/more bars, fewer dropped calls, faster data rates, and longer battery life.  Antenna tuning combines the fixed inductance of the mobile device’s built-in antenna with electronically controlled capacitances; the Antenna-Tuning Circuit precisely controls tunable capacitors, such as ST’s STPTIC series, to optimally match the resonant frequency of the antenna and the frequency band being used.

The STHVDAC-253M is a dedicated ASIC that integrates three high-voltage Digital-to-Analog Converters, allowing it to simultaneously optimize antenna performance in three different frequency bands. ST’s smart-tuner device takes advantage of the recently introduced MIPI RFFE1 tandard that mobile chipset suppliers have adopted as the control interface from the RF block to the various front-end modules such as power amplifiers, low-noise amplifiers, filters, switches, DC/DC-converters, and antennas. 

Manufacturers of mobile devices must constantly strive to offer customers better user experiences despite extreme cost sensitivity. ST’s solution allows LTE smartphones to significantly improve the user experience via a new level of antenna performance that customers are going to love.

Before the development and adoption of RFFE, the standard control was SPI (Serial Peripheral Interface), which required customers to modify their drivers to support the antenna tuning circuit.  The STHVDAC-253M supports all MIPI RFFE features such as Extended Mode, triggers, and 26MHz clock operation, while coming in 30% smaller footprint than other existing solutions, with corresponding cost and board-size benefits to the phone manufacturer.

“Our latest antenna-tuning circuit is another example of how ST makes its customers more successful by providing solutions that translate directly into benefits for their own customers, as our customers have demonstrated with their latest product,” said Ricardo De Sa-Earp, Group Vice President, ASD&IPAD Division General Manager, STMicroelectronics.

Housed in a Flip Chip CSP 0.4mm pitch package, samples of the STHVDAC-253M will be available through e-distribution from mid-March 2014. Pricing for 1ku is US$0.57.

For further information please go to www.st.com/smart-antenna-tuning

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About STMicroelectronics
ST is a global leader in the semiconductor market serving customers across the spectrum of sense and power and automotive products and embedded processing solutions. From energy management and savings to trust and data security, from healthcare and wellness to smart consumer devices, in the home, car and office, at work and at play, ST is found everywhere microelectronics make a positive and innovative contribution to people's life. By getting more from technology to get more from life, ST stands for life.augmented.

In 2013, the Company’s net revenues were $8.08 billion. Further information on ST can be found at www.st.com.

 

1MIPI Radio-Frequency Front-End specification.  An open membership organization that develops interface specifications for mobile and mobile-influenced industries, the MIPI® Alliance was founded in 2003 by ARM, Intel, Nokia, Samsung, STMicroelectronics and Texas Instruments and in 2013 had more than 220 member companies worldwide.
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