To USB or Not to USB
  • About

    Covering the latest trends and topics in USB IP.

    Eric started working on USB in 1995, starting with the world’s first BIOS that supported USB Keyboards and Mice while at Award Software. After a departure into embedded systems software for real-time operating systems, he returned to USB IP cores and software at inSilicon, one of the leading suppliers of USB IP. In 2002, inSilicon was acquired by Synopsys and he’s been here since. He also served as Chairman of the USB On-The-Go Working Group for the USB Implementers Forum from 2004-2006.

    Eric received an M.B.A. from Santa Clara University and an M.S. in Engineering from University of California Irvine, and a B.S. in Engineering from the University of Minnesota. and is a licensed Professional Engineer in Civil Engineering in the State of California

    Michael (Mick) Posner joined Synopsys in 1994 and is currently Director of Product Marketing for Synopsys' DesignWare USB Solutions. Previously, he was the Director of Product Marketing for Physical (FPGA-based) Prototyping and has held various product marketing, technical marketing manager and application consultant positions at Synopsys. He holds a Bachelor Degree in Electronic and Computer Engineering from the University of Brighton, England.

Why my Video Cameras and Digital Cameras really need USB 3.0 – Part 2

Posted by Eric Huang on March 26th, 2013

Camera makers can make more money by embedding NAND Flash in their cameras.

How Camera Makers Limit Themselves

Why haven’t camera makers embedded NAND Flash?  Because of cost and profit margins.  They don’t include it because most camera makers and the decision makers a conservative bunch of chip makers.  More importantly, they value image quality and price point.

The engineers take the lowest risk path to make sure the product is delivered on-time.  Proven technologies help. Power and battery life are important.  Form factors and heat are also important.  Most important is the image quality and shutter response time must be flawless.

In a few cases, the purchasing managers take the lowest cost path and may NOT put in fast memory when it is embedded.

The marketing people

-          concentrate on the optics and picture quality more than the transfer speed.

-          And hitting price points near $100 and $300.

All these are fine, but they simply ignore the user experience of getting the data off the camera.


One solution that has emerged is the Canon WiFi camera that actually has WiFi built into the camera so you can wireless transmit pictures to the Internet.  After 5 years of iPhones and more years of phones with cameras, we finally see these dedicated cameras able to connect and upload pictures/videos without a PC.

Disclosure: I’ve purchased 7+ Canon cameras in the past 15 years and at least 5 Sony Cameras for personal and business use.  I am a fan of both companies products.  I do feel that both companies are late in joining the WiFi internet age.  I also feel there is a well-defined future where their products will thrive and grow.

The obvious problem here, with WiFi is battery life.  The battery will drain even more quickly with WiFi on and transmitting photos. You can solve this power drain from WiFi by simply plugging the camera into a charger (via USB) and transmitting via WiFi when charging.

What you can’t solve is the data transfer rate.  Again, the camera is rate limited by the WiFi. In this case, in the best case today, the camera will have WiFi-N supporting a theoretical 150Mbps.  This is still less the USB 2.0 effective speed of 320 Mbps and must slower than USB 3.0’s 3-4 Gbps.  Again, if you use an SD card (Class 10),  you are limited to a speed of 80 Mbps, so you can’ t really make it go faster.  You need faster memory.

I’ll try to get to the Economics Tomorrow


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Here’s our new DDR Guy.

Yes, that was my thought also.

You can read about DDR at The Eyes Have It by Navraj Nandra.

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