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TI Unveils Wireless E-MTA Solution

Texas Instruments introduced the first reference design for an integrated wireless residential gateway, DOCSIS 2.0 cable modem and PacketCable 1.5 embedded media terminal adapter (E-MTA). Called the TNETC731, TI's new reference design enables OEMs to build an integrated device to handle high-speed data, VoIP and Wi-Fi home networking. TI is currently the leading supplier of silicon and software for PacketCable E-MTAs, counting the top two manufacturers of those products, ARRIS and Motorola, as customers. Rather than tinkering with a core VoIP platform that's now supporting over a million cable IP phone customers worldwide, TI has added Wi-Fi features carefully. "Once you get voice working well, you don't want to change that part," said Patrick Hibbs, worldwide product marketing manager for TI's Cable Products Group. "We've held the voice platform stable and added wireless LAN and residential gateway functionality to it." The TNETC731 design includes the DSP-based TNETC460x cable modem system on a chip and TNETV901 Voice DSP, DOCSIS 1.0/1.1/2.0 and PacketCable 1.0/1.5 software, as well as TI's 802.11 b/g TNETW1350A wireless chip and driver. The design has enough processing power to simultaneously support 2 lines of VoIP, cellular codecs, residential gateway software (NAT and firewall) and broadband Wi-Fi. TI customers say they plan to bring Wi-Fi enabled E-MTAs to market in the first half of 2006. The move will help MSOs integrate mobile and landline voice services by supporting Wi-Fi enabled dual-mode handsets. Wi-Fi E-MTAs may also ease VoIP installations, as broadband access can easily be delivered throughout the home without the need to install new cabling or a separate cable modem for consumers that desire a voice-data service bundle.
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