The New Shape of WLAN Cards

By Eric Griffith

June 10, 2002

New designs and silicon from SyChip will put 802.11b on a postage stamp-sized secure digital input/output card for the first time.

PHILADELPHIA, PA -- Fabless semiconductor manufacturer SyChip, of Plano, TX, today announced that they're getting into the 802.11b chip set space with a reference design for a secure digital (SD) input/output WLAN card.

The general form factor of an SD card, usually used as a memory storage card, is about the size of a postage stamp -- 32mm x 24mm x 2.1mm. SD slots are generally found in personal digital assistants (PDAs) such as the Palm m500.

The chips will include all software drivers and complete 802.11b functions for OEMs. SyChip's modules will support Windows 2000/XP/CE (2.11 or greater), and the Palm OS 4 and higher. The products would be targeted toward consumers but will also address mobile and telecommuting areas of the enterprise. Like any standard WLAN network card, the SyChip based NICs would be able to operate in ad hoc (peer-to-peer) or Infrastructure mode (with an access point).

SyChip expects an evaluation card for the embedded module, and the support material for the reference design to be ready by the third quarter, with the samples of the full SD NIC card by the end of the year.



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