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SiRF Unveils the SiRFprima Multifunction Location Platform
Marvin Hlavac
SiRF Unveils the SiRFprima Multifunction Location Platform to Drive Next-Generation Mobile Convergence Devices

Innovative Architecture Integrating GPS/Galileo Location with Multimedia and 3D Graphics to be Demonstrated at 2008 GSMA Mobile World Congress


SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 7 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Delivering on its vision of the convergence between location, multimedia and content in the mobile device market, SiRF Technology Holdings, Inc. , a leading provider of GPS-powered location platforms, today launched its SiRFprima(TM) multifunction platform to enable the next generation of location-aware mobile devices that significantly enhance the consumer experience for location applications and media rich content. The SiRFprima platform combines an industry leading GPS/Galileo location engine, powerful application processor, rich audio and video recording and playback capabilities, high-resolution 3D graphics and a host of peripheral interfaces -- all tuned to operate concurrently. Supporting both WinCE and Linux operating system environments, the SiRFprima platform will give manufacturers greater flexibility to create in a timely and cost-effective manner unique, full-featured products that meet consumers' high expectations for performance, affordability and portability.

"With its high-performance multifunction engines all tuned to run in harmony, the SiRFprima platform sets a new standard for performance and integration in the emerging market for exciting new location-aware convergence products," said Kanwar Chadha, founder and vice president of marketing for SiRF. "We believe the SiRFprima platform delivers on our vision of the convergence of location with rich media content, and extends SiRF's leadership in providing innovative solutions that bring the power of location to the mainstream."

The SiRFprima platform includes an ultra-high-speed, multifunction processor comprised of an advanced ARM11 core, a high-performance location engine that supports both GPS and Galileo satellite systems and an on-chip DSP. It also includes hardware-accelerated 3D graphics and multimedia encoding and decoding engines based on the gaming-grade PowerVR MBX 3D graphics accelerator core, vertex geometry processor and PowerVR MVED1 video encode/decode accelerator from Imagination Technologies.

The SiRFprima multifunction processor delivers SiRF's renowned, industry leading, GPS-enabled location performance, featuring 64 channels with -161 dBm sensitivity. The hardware scalable location engine, with more than 1,000,000 correlators, is among the first capable of working with both GPS and Galileo signals simultaneously. Additionally, the SiRFprima processor has been specifically designed to support SiRF's proprietary GPS technologies, providing, for example, a dedicated accelerator for the SiRFInstantFixII(TM) technology.

"We are very excited by the SiRFprima platform because it offers an opportunity that until now software developers have only dreamed of. With its overall high performance, from its graphics to its memory bandwidth, the SiRFprima platform is definitely the 'prima' solution for us," said Peter Balogh, CTO of Nav N Go, a leading developer supplying navigation applications to leading PND players, including the award-winning Nav N Go iGO8 3D navigation software. "With its high degree of integration and extensive array of design features, the SiRFprima platform is truly a fantastic advance in the convergence market, and will make it much easier for us to achieve our goal of making navigation and mobile software more accessible and enjoyable to as many people as possible."

The SiRFprima platform supports OpenGL ES, Direct3DM and OpenVG, and can drive full-color, high-resolution displays with multiple hardware overlay layers. The hardware media acceleration has enough processing muscle to encode and decode mainstream and high-resolution video standards concurrently with navigation and other operations.

In addition to performance gains delivered by the multifunction processor, the SiRFprima platform also offers a full complement of peripheral and external interfaces for connecting to touch screens, mass storage devices, video cameras, DVD players, satellite radios and other devices.

What previously required several external coprocessors has now been integrated into the SiRFprima platform, significantly reducing bill-of-material (BOM) costs for SiRF customers. By integrating typical discrete components onto its own silicon, SiRF not only reduces the total system cost, but also decreases board design complexity and time to market risk.

According to a report released recently by New York-based ABI Research, manufacturers of personal navigation devices are facing continued stiff competition and will likely seek to stand out in the market by adding speech technology, multimedia capabilities, 3D map content and other features to their products. ABI Research predicts worldwide sales of these convergence devices will surpass more than 100 million units by 2011.

Mobile consumer electronics devices -- including mobile phones, portable navigation devices, handheld computers, games and even cameras -- have already begun moving beyond their original, single-function designs to incorporate numerous combinations of connectivity, location and media and content functions. Mobile phones today routinely offer music playback and integrated cameras, while portable navigation devices increasingly contain audio, still image and video playback capabilities and connect wirelessly to mobile phones for hands-free operation.

SiRF believes the distinctions between some of these product categories will blur as this convergence progresses, creating new generations of more powerful multifunctional consumer electronics devices that navigate, inform and entertain. To compete effectively and satisfy consumer demand, manufacturers of these convergence products will require more flexible, highly integrated solutions. SiRF believes the SiRFprima platform launched today delivers all the necessary ingredients and flexibility for developing tomorrow's premium convergence systems.

Availability and Pricing

SiRF is demonstrating the SiRFprima multifunction location platform in the SiRF Technology booth (Hall 1, Booth F06) at the upcoming GSMA Mobile World Congress 2008 being held in Barcelona, Spain, February 11-14, 2008. The SiRFprima multifunction platform will begin sampling to lead customers in the second quarter of this year. As with most SiRF solutions, the SiRFprima platform offers form factor reference designs and full evaluation boards. Please contact SiRF for pricing information.
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