The USB MultiSwitch Hub is a 4-port IC that acts as two independently controllable USB 2.0 hubs in a single package with the ability to electronically reassign and reconfigure any of its four downstream ports to either of its two upstream USB ports.
SMSC, Hauppauge, NY. (631) 435-6000.
The following are but a few of the applications that demonstrate the range and versatility of device sharing that the USB MultiSwitch makes possible:
- A laptop can share all the devices connected to a desktop system
- A game console can share all the devices of a Macintosh or Windows PC
- A set-top box and digital television can share devices within the entertainment center.
- Embedded systems can shift internal USB devices between different Systems-on-Chips (SOCs)
Sharing peripherals between discrete platforms will become a lot easier via the four-port MultiSwitch Hub (part number USB2524). The chip's end goal is to eliminate expensive networking topologies, cumbersome cabling, and extra software. Key features include three switching modes, multiple LED modes, configuration options via I2C EEPROM or the SMBus slave port, 24-MHz crystal driver, a PLL for 480-MHz sampling, 1.8V linear voltage regulator, pull-up/pull-down resistors for USB termination, and short-circuit protection on differential signal pins. The device is fully compliant with the USB2.0 specification and will attach to either or both upstream USB hosts as a full-speed or full/hi-speed hub. The four downstream hub ports support low-speed, full-speed and hispeed (if operating as a hi-speed hub) downstream devices on all of the enabled downstream ports. Any configuration of the downstream ports is possible except simultaneous connection to both upstream ports.
WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?
This IC is the industry's first USB sharing hub. It is expected to lead to a new generation of products with both USB connectivity and device sharing. The chip leverages the connectivity inherent in USB certified devices and systems and extends that to a new generation of USB devices that can be shared. With the USB MultiSwitch, OEMs can offer consumers a great deal of freedom for mixing and matching systems and peripherals that can be connected and shared with one another quickly, easily, and inexpensively.
END USER EXAMPLE:
A user with both laptop and desktop computers can connect the laptop to a wired or wireless hub enabled by the USB MultiSwitch. He or she can then selectively share the printer, an MP3 device and scanner, or any other USB peripheral device connected to the hub between his laptop and desktop systems. All this happens on-the-fly without the need for software, configuring, or rebooting.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY:
Samples are available now with production slated for the third quarter. Pricing will be $3.75 each in OEM quantities.
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