Electronic Design

USB-To-Serial Controller Keeps Portable Devices In Hand

Currently, designers are moving away from serial and parallel ports and using the Universal Serial Bus (USB) and IEEE-1394 ports instead. That's the reason why Kawasaki LSI is introducing its KL5KUSB116 USB-to-serial controller integrated circuit. It lets designers establish a USB interface in portable communications devices, such as cell phones, personal digital assistants, and other information appliances that already have serial interfaces.

About the size of a child's fingernail, this 7 by 7 mm device incorporates a USB transceiver engine (1.0/1.1 compliant), a standard serial-port interface engine, and a 16-bit RISC CPU with internal RAM and ROM. Thanks to these features, along with a high transfer rate of 230 kbits/s, this IC fits next-generation, handheld serial-to-USB designs. A UART is included as well for debugging and code development.

Since this device implements the latest USB standard of higher-speed data transfers, it is well suited for connections to high-speed modems and ISDN terminal adapters. Additionally, the IC and its companion software make the USB interface transparent to the peripheral. No other firmware changes are required. Peripherals that have serial interfaces, then, can easily interface with USB with minimum modifications.

Supplied in a 44-pin LQFP, the KL5KUSB116 costs $7.23 each in quantities of 1000 units. Evaluation boards and reference designs are available as well. Drivers are included. Source code is available for a licensing fee.

Kawasaki LSI, 2570 North First St., San Jose, CA 95131; (408) 570-0555; fax (408) 570-0567; www.klsi.com.

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