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Lucent debuts Netphone-on-a-chip

ARM-based chip to cut phone costs by 30 per cent

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Lucent today announced what it claims is the world's first phone-on-a-chip product for Internet-based telephony. The company reckons the move will stimulate the netphone market considerably, primarily by reducing the cost of a handset from around $250 to $150. According to market researcher Dataquest, the market for netphones will grow to 8.8 million units by 2002 -- an average growth rate of 250 per cent over the next three years. The new chip won't be available immediately, however. First, Lucent will offer a dual-chip solution (a microprocessor and a DSP) which wil ship in Q4. Later -- though it didn't specify when -- the company will ship the single-chip version. The single netphone chip's microprocessor will be based on the Intel ARM architecture. It will support 10/100 Ethernet and provide repeater functionality to allow the host phone to share a single Ethernet port with a desktop PC. Curiously, it will also support USB. ®

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