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GCT Announces Industry-First Bluetooth VOIP Solution

GCT Semiconductor, Inc. announced that NetCODEC Co. solutions, will be using GCT’s Bluetooth chipset and associated software stack to enable its VOB(TM) Bluetooth voice over IP (VOIP) solution. The two companies combined expertise to develop the world’s first Bluetooth-based cordless VOIP phone.

This industry-first Bluetooth VOIP solution uses the GCT Semiconductor Bluetooth chipset to take advantage of packet-switching technology over an asynchronous connection-less (ACL) link. Offering better voice quality, higher reliability, support for more voice calls, and lower power consumption, this unique solution is expected to drive volume shipments in the Japanese market.

GCT’s chipset includes its proven baseband solution (GDM1202) with embedded digital signal processing (DSP) capabilities — which allows speech compression to be performed in the handset instead of in the VOIP station as in competing solutions. It also includes the GDM1002 radio transceiver, which uses GCT’s proprietary direct conversion architecture to offer superior channel selectivity.

“GCT was the first company to develop and launch a Bluetooth baseband solution with integrated DSP capability,” observes Dr. Kyeongho Lee, President and CEO of GCT Semiconductor. “This has enabled us to achieve innovative design wins, such as the NetCODEC VOB, that require high voice quality and reliability, support for a large number of simultaneous voice calls, low system cost, and low power consumption. Products like our Bluetooth chipset can be used to gain a significant competitive advantage and drive market leadership in the Bluetooth multimedia industry.”

Better voice quality and higher reliability are realized in the VOB solution by transmitting data packets over an ACL link (as compared to voice packets over a Synchronous Connection-Oriented (SCO) link). This improved quality and performance in the presence of interference is due to the retransmission and forward error correction (FEC) capabilities of ACL that SCO does not offer.

The new VOB solution simultaneously supports up to seven different calls, as compared to other available products that support only three. As a result, the VOB product significantly increases call capability per unit access point. Because the effective data rate of the VOB using compressed speech is 4 to 10X smaller than that of a conventional scheme using raw data speech, this VOIP solution can reduce power consumption by more than 2X.

Since speech DSP function is processed in the phone using the GCT Bluetooth chipset, the bill of materials (BOM) of the VOB station is kept low because an external high-performance host processor is not required. NetCODEC’s family of Bluetooth VOIP products includes the VOB(TM) Bluetooth VOIP cordless phone and VOB(TM) USB station module.

Leopalace21, the largest apartment chain in Japan and a leading provider of interactive TV services, has already selected the NetCODEC’s VOB system for use with its residential video on demand (VOD) set-top box. As a result, Leopalace21 expects to install more than 40,000 VOB systems this year.

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