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Electronics Production | June 06, 2006

STMicro to Enter Large-Size LCD Driver Market

STMicroelectronics today announced plans to introduce column driver ICs for the fast-growing LCD TV market, following the signing of a licensing agreement with National Semiconductor Corporation to use their PPDS® (point-to-point differential signaling) display technology.
Samples of the first products in the new family are expected to be available in Q3 2006 and will complete ST's existing portfolio of drivers for Plasma, small-size LCD and OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) displays.

Widely used in computer monitors, LCD displays are increasingly being used for flat-screen TVs as large LCD-panel prices continue to become more attractive and earlier performance limitations compared to plasma are overcome. ST believes that implementing the PPDS technology into its designs will dramatically simplify the intra-panel interconnect, reduce the total number of column driver signals required by up to 50% to enable a physically smaller bezel around the TV screen, and provide cinema-quality display performance.

ST brings to this market segment its long experience in display systems and technologies including computer monitors, TV applications, mobile displays, plasma screens, small-size LCD and OLED. The company plans to offer innovative and cost-competitive solutions, leveraging its extensive experience in mixed-signal and high-voltage design, complemented by its leading-edge proprietary BCD (Bipolar, CMOS, and DMOS) high-voltage process technologies.

“ST is implementing its strategy to become a major player in the mainstream high-end LCD TV market. The company plans to offer extremely competitive driver products, based around National's PPDS display architecture, together with our leading-edge process technology developed specially for the application, enabling manufacturers to meet their customers' expectations for performance, TV set appearance, and economy,” said Philippe Berger, General Manager of ST's Display Division. “Additionally, ST has the dedicated display driver support teams that will work closely with manufacturers to ease the design process, and the necessary world-class and high-quality semiconductor manufacturing infrastructure to support large volume production in this fast growing market.”

“National's PPDS technology is on track to become the new interface standard for LCD panels,” said Todd Whitaker, product line director of National Semiconductor's Flat Panel Display group. “National is committed to driving widespread adoption of our PPDS technology by licensing to top tier semiconductor manufacturers such as STMicroelectronics.”

STMicroelectronics and National Semiconductor plan to demonstrate National's differential signaling timing controller and column driver chipset at the ST booth (#1302) at the Society for Information Display (SID) International Symposium in San Francisco from June 6-8. The SID conference is the premier international gathering of scientists, engineers, manufacturers and users in the electronic-display industry.

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