7nm GNSS receiver for wearables cuts power by 5x

September 22, 2021 // By Nick Flaherty
7nm GNSS receiver for wearables cuts power by 5x
The third generation dual-frequency GNSS receiver from Broadcom features advanced multipath mitigation, L5 acquisition capability, LTE filtering, and jamming protection

Broadcom has launched a L1/L5 dual band GNSS receiver chip built in 7nm CMOS that reduces power consumption to 6mW

The BCM4778 is optimized for mobile and wearable applications with a footprint 35 percent smaller than the previous generation.

The GNSS power consumption is 4mW for the L1 band and 6mW for both L1 and L5. This lower power increases the GNSS always-on battery lifetime on a smart watch by 30 hours when compared to the previous generation chip operating on a 300mAh battery. The extended battery life benefit helps drive new experiences in smart watches and phones. For example, smart watches can keep the GNSS always-on for fitness applications for multiple days on a single battery charge.

Dual-frequency GNSS continues to be an important location feature for modern mobile and wearable devices as it provides greater positioning accuracy for location-based services (LBS) applications. The advanced L5 signal enables sidewalk-level accuracy for pedestrian navigation in urban environments, as well as lane-level accuracy for vehicle navigation.

The BCM4778 has fully integrated LNAs for L1 and L5 bands, which reduces RF front-end BOM costs and footprint requirements in space-constrained applications. Placing the BCM4778 closer to the antenna helps improve signal reception and thereby enhance the overall GNSS performance.

New Grid Tracking technology provides advanced multipath mitigation for lower power operation along with continuous tracking of the full L5 channel. There is enhanced LTE Band 13 and Band 14 filtering to avoid interference as well as a spoofing and jamming detector and jamming mitigation through multiband and multi constellation.

“With the launch of this third generation dual-frequency GNSS receiver chip, Broadcom continues the tradition of raising the bar for mobile GNSS,” said Vijay Nagarajan, vice president of marketing for the Wireless Communications and Connectivity Division at Broadcom. “Always-on dual frequency GNSS is a key request from mobile and wearable OEMs, and we are thrilled to deliver it.”

“We are excited to see this impressive power reduction, combined with


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