12Gb/s transmission enables next-gen infotainment

15th October 2015
Nat Bowers

A multi-channel technology for high resolution in-car video applications, Inova Semiconductors has announced APIX3, the latest version of its APIX multi-channel SerDes technology for video and data communication in vehicles. The APIX3 version supports transmission at up to 6Gb/s over a single twisted pair cable and up to 12Gb/s over a quad twisted pair connection, which is four times the speed of the previous-gen devices.

This means that APIX3 supports video with HD and Ultra HD displays. By supporting different cable media - STP, QTP and co-axial - APIX3 reduces the cost of cables to automotive manufacturers, OEMs and tier 1 suppliers. It provides scalable bandwidth, which means it can be used from entry level to high end systems.

APIX3 provides a number of features that are not available with alternative technologies for in-car video. Firstly, it enables the transmission of multiple video channels on one connection, thus supporting advanced cockpit architectures. It also supports 100Mb Ethernet and other popular serial interface protocols. Finally, APIX3 provides advanced diagnostic capabilities, including cable monitoring for preventive detection of cable degradation.

Thomas Rothhaupt, Director Sales & Marketing, Inova Semiconductors, commented: “Building on Inova’s experience with the 30m APIX devices deployed in cars already, APIX3 provides the bandwidth and features required for the latest generation of automotive video applications. As manufacturers are adding more and more video to their cars, including multiple cameras and connected devices, APIX3 provides a flexible, reliable and cost-effective solution.”

The first Inova products based on APIX3 are now in development and sampling to key customers, with general sampling due in Q3 2016. An APIX3 test chip is available today for evaluation from Inova.

The APIX3 IP is available now for licensing, with the first licensing deal being negotiated and expected to be closed before the end of 2015. Inova is also working with its partners to establish a full supporting ecosystem, including cables and connectors.

The APIX3 technology is backward compatible with APIX2. It provides full duplex communication channels, and an active equaliser to automatically adjust to transmission lines individually, thus allowing plug and play connectivity. It also provides compensation for cable ageing and temperature. APIX3 supports safety-relevant (ISO26262) applications and meets automotive EMI and robustness requirements.

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