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Texas Instruments releases a single chip to handle Displayport, USB and power

Could spell the end of multiple ports on smartphones and tablets
Thu Aug 01 2013, 13:10

CHIPMAKER Texas Instruments has shown off a single chip that allows Displayport output, USB traffic and power to be transferred over a single cable.

Texas Instruments, which makes a multitude of integrated circuits for smartphones and tablets alongside its main ARM based OMAP system on chip (SoC) processors, has announced a single chip that can handle just about every wired input and output need. The firm's HD3SS2521 chip uses the Dockport interface and supports Displayport video, USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and power delivery.

According to Texas Instruments, the 5x11mm chip handles Dockport detection, signal and power switching. Perhaps most impressive is Texas Instruments' claim that the connector can drive a single 4k resolution screen at 30fps or four monitors at HD 1080p resolution at 60fps, though the capabilities of the HD3SS2521 will be limited by the actual SoC in the smartphone or tablet, which is unlikely to be able to drive a 4k resolution display at 30fps when running graphically intensive workloads.

The ability of Texas Instruments' HD3SS2521 chip to handle power, video and USB connectivity over a single cable will be particularly desirable for tablets that are increasingly promoting the use of video output and, in the case of Windows 8 devices, connectivity with USB devices. The chipmaker might be hoping that by needing only a single chip and 4k resolution support, high-end tablet makers will start to design devices that support the Dockport standard.

Texas Instruments said the HD3SS2521 chip is available in a 56-pin WQFN package and is priced at $1.85 in 1,000 unit quantities. µ


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