Saankya Labs Launches Indian-Made SDR Chipset

Article By : Sufia Tippu

TV broadcast support on mobile devices among unique selling points

BENGALURU — City-based fabless semiconductor and systems company Saankhya Labs has launched the first locally-developed electronic chipset that can be used for functions like direct TV broadcast on mobile devices. The device, expected to curb call drops, claims to be one of the world’s first and most advanced multi-standard next-generation TV system on a chip.

Simply put, the chipset will facilitate direct transmission of video on mobile phones and can also help convert an Android-based smartphone into a satellite phone.

The Mobile ready version is a first-of-its-kind that supports most advanced IP based next-gen terrestrial TV reception. We expect to launch chipset-based mobile phone accessories in the form of a dongle within a couple of years, Naik said,” Parag Naik cofounder, Saankhya Labs said.

The new Pruthvi-3 series of Software Defined Radio (SDR) chipsets are an improvement over the previous Pruthvi chip that was launched in 2015. This series has three chipsets– SL3000/3010 Baseband Demodulator (Receiver), SL4000 single-chip mobile receiver (RF tuner/baseband demodulator) and SL7000 modulator for transmitter and modems. All the three chipsets have various range of applications in smartphones, broadcast TV, satellite and defence communications.

The company also announced that it is working on its broadcast-broadband convergence solution to enable telecom service providers to offload video traffic from their mobile network onto the broadcast network. This will help decongest mobile spectrum use by removing video traffic that accounts for maximum data use. This will improve better usage of mobile spectrum and help reduce call drops and improve voice-call quality.

India’s telecom minister Manoj Sinha, at the launch of the chipset, said this broadband-broadcast convergence technology used in the chipset has great potential to minimise or eliminate call quality issues faced by telecom operators today.

“This chipset will help in separating video content from a mobile network and hence reduce the load on the spectrum for improving call quality,” Naik explained.

Saankya Labs with clients in the US and China has bagged orders to supply 5 million chipsets for various kinds of devices.

“We are looking at 50% year-on-year growth in business. In this financial year, we are expecting sales of around $14-15 million. We have advance orders for supplying to companies in the US that they will use in tablets and television gateways, Naik pointed out.

Saankhya Labs has also started a pilot for rural broadband services in Scotland and Africa and received a request for the project in the Philippines, Brazil and the US.

The Pruthvi-3 chipsets have been designed and developed in India by using the Samsung foundry’s 28nm FD-SOI technology supporting advanced physical layer functionality. The company claims these chipsets are power optimised for providing better battery life in mobile phones and other devices. The SL3000 comes with QFN 68 pin measuring 8x8mm while the SL3010 features BGA-121 pin measuring 8x8mm. On the other hand, the SL4000 comes with BGA-99 pin measuring 7x11mm.

— Sufia Tippu is a freelance tech journalist based in India contributing to EE Times India

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