Fuzhou Rockchip Electronics Co. Ltd., a Chine-based manufacturer of ARM-based application processors, has teamed with Analogix Semiconductor Inc. (Santa Clara, Calif.) to create SlimPort-enabled reference designs for smartphones and tablets.
SlimPort products are based on DisplayPort, which is a digital display interface developed by the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA). DisplayPort stands in competition to HDMI. SlimPort, or Mobility DisplayPort, is an energy-efficient interface that draws no power from the source and is therefore suitable for plugging mobile devices into larger displays. The SlimPort standard was released in June 2012. SlimPort delivers uncompressed audio and video over mobile USB connectors to HDTVs, computer monitors and projectors.
Analogix claims to be the leading supplier of DisplayPort-compliant semiconductors and IP products used in notebooks, tablets and other mobile devices. The Google Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 smartphones include the SlimPort function, as does the recently launched Google HP Chromebook 11.
Analogix is clearly hoping SlimPort will garner similar success to DisplayPort. The company recently claimed that it had shipped a total of more than 500 million DisplayPort devices into the consumer electronics market.
"The adoption of DisplayPort for both internal and external screen connectivity, in particular, is exceeding our expectations," said Kewei Yang, chairman and CEO of Analogix, in a statement. He added that demand for SlimPort-enabled smartphones, tablets and notebook computers is also fueling the company's growth. Supporters of SlimPort include Google, LG, ASUS, Hewlett-Packard and ZTE. But clearly for some emerging market customers, Analogix feels more help will be beneficial and hence the reference designs.
"The marriage of Rockchip's high-performance graphics processing and SlimPort delivers outstanding video performance," said Chen Feng, vice president of marketing for Rockchip, in a statement issued by Analogix.
Andre Bouwer, vice president of marketing at Analogix, said in the same statement that this year devices have become significantly more interoperable, "leveraging the cloud, and sharing content with a variety of screens."