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Agere Systems today said that it has co-developed a Serial ATA-150 system-on-a-chip with Maxtor Corporation. The custom SoC will be used in Maxtor’s next-generation MaXLine and DiamondMax SATA hard drives to provide higher performance and cost-efficiency.

Agere’s custom Serial ATA-150 system-on-a-chip, currently sampling to Maxtor, replaces interim two-chip bridge solutions used today, while offering improved connectivity, performance, reliability and efficiency. The chip integrates a 1.5Gb/s Serial ATA-150 interface with a high-performance read-channel, microprocessor, memory and hard disk controller. This SoC complements Agere’s TrueStore serial platform, which supports current and next-generation data rates for Serial ATA-150, Serial-attached SCSI (SAS) and Fibre Channel interface standards.

Industry analyst firm iSuppli Corporation estimates that the number of hard disk drives deployed with integrated Serial ATA-150 interfaces will top 250 million units by 2005. Serial ATA-150 provides OEMs, system builders and consumers with simplicity of design, with cables that are easy to route and install, as well as smaller cable connectors featuring improved silicon design and lower pin counts.

As a member and founding member of the Serial ATA Working Group, Agere and Maxtor respectively are collaborating with other industry players on finalizing the technical specifications for Serial ATA II, which would double the data throughput of Serial ATA-150 to 3.0Gb/s. Using

Agere’s Serial Storage Interface Platform (SSIP), HDD and system manufacturers will be able to capitalize on this new Serial ATA-300 (Serial ATA II) data rate to develop drive-side SoCs and host bus ASIC adapters. Agere’s PHY-level SSIP solution is protocol- and data-rate agnostic, supporting 1.50Gb/s  and 3.0Gb/s speeds for Serial ATA and SAS implementations.

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