Bluetooth progress facilitated by ASE's fine pitch technology
TAIPEI, TAIWAN - Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE) is working with Cambridge Silicon Radio (CSR) to build its next generation Bluetooth chip. ASE is using its fine-pitch bonding technology to allow CSR to reportedly achieve the lowest form factor in the industry for Bluetooth baseband, radio frequency (RF), microcontroller and memory units.
The fine pitch bonding technology developed by ASE uses smaller solder balls and a finer pitch than standard ball grid array (BGA) packaging. This facilitates the integration and high-density functionality that is the goal of Bluetooth technology. ASE's very thin fine-pitch BGA (VFBGA) provides more I/Os per unit area, which improves the performance of the unit. The smaller size also improves the stability and decreases the cost of the product.
Chris Ladas, VP of operations at CSR, said that ASE's "packaging and test solutions will aid in slashing costs to make the $5 goal for Bluetooth a reality." CSR was the first company to offer a single-chip Bluetooth solution. Its BlueCore product integrated a 2.4 GHz radio, baseband and microcontroller. Compaq will be using CSR's technology for Bluetooth connectivity in its latest iPAQ Pocket PC, and it cited the small form factor of CSR's product as a key factor in that decision.