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Lucent unveils DSP for hands-free calling

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Lucent unveils DSP for hands-free calling

Lucent Technologies Inc.’s Microelectronics Group plans to introduce a digital signal processor-based chipset optimized for the hands-free cellular environment in automobiles this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The chipset allows hands-free cellular users to be heard more clearly without the need to speak loudly by eliminating echoes and suppressing background noise, said the company. The single-chip DSP simultaneously can enable voice recognition; hands-free, full-duplex speaker phone functions, including adaptive acoustic echo cancellation, line echo cancellation and noise suppression; simultaneous voice and data; and voice memo recording functions.

The chipset is targeted for use in a variety of hands-free markets, including automotive telematics, embedded cell phone hands-free kits and portable hands-free kits.

The DSP, which is based on Lucent’s DSP1627 and DSP1629 products, operates at 100 million instructions per second, which Lucent said is more than double the performance of competing chips in the same price range.

Boulder, Colo.-based CellPort Labs will use Lucent’s chipset in its pocket and base unit hands-free connectivity systems, which are scheduled to be introduced during the first quarter, said Lucent.

Motorola Inc.’s Telematics Communications Group also plans to use the chipset in its hands-free phone systems slated for use in Motorola’s embedded telematics systems, which are expected to be available by 2001.

“Lucent’s high-powered DSP definitely does a much better job of suppressing the multitude of in-cabin automobile background noises, such as wind, passenger movement and echo, than the several other DSP chips we tested,” said Doug Daniels, vice president of marketing and sales at CellPort. “The Lucent solution helps the car driver using a hands-free cellular phone talk in a more normal voice without needing to speak unnaturally, as is typical with other systems available today.

“Most people limit their cell phone sound volumes to avoid echoes,” added Daniels. “Lucent’s echo cancellation also allows drivers to listen to the far side speaker at high volume levels without annoying howling or echoes.”

The chipset solution is available in sample quantities and will be available in high volumes during the first quarter, according to Lucent.

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