'MediaPC is on time' says National's boss

‘MediaPC is on time’ says National’s boss
Tom Foremski National Semiconductor says it is on schedule to deliver samples of its MediaPC system-on-a-chip product in June. “We are dead on schedule with MediaPC, we expect tapeout in March and we already have a lot of interest from potential customers,” National’s CEO Brian Halla told Electronics Weekly. “We will also be offering MediaPC versions that are customised for different applications, for example in cellular phone applications.” The company is rapidly shifting production to a 0.18?m process at its Portland fab and will beat a similar move by Intel. National has staked its future on developing cheap PC devices embedded in a range of applications. The first MediaPC chip combines several intellectual property (IP) cores. It is designed for applications such as fast DVD decoding for use in digital set-top TV boxes. “It would take Intel a long time to catch up with what we’ve done. They don’t realise how long it has taken to acquire all the IP you need and there are major challenges in testing such an integrated chip,” claimed Halla. National’s Israeli based subsidiary has been instrumental in developing much of the MediaPC design, especially integrating the reusable components required when producing variants of the chip. One concept National has been touting for its MediaPC is the WebPad, a wireless display using MediaPC and offering Web surfing and Internet access through a 2.4GHz wireless connection.

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