An Introduction To The IrDA Standard And System Implementation
By Dr. Keming W. Yeh and Dr. Lichen Wang

The IrDA standard has successfully progressed from IrDA-1.0 (115.2Kbps) to IrDA-1.1 (4Mbps) in the short two and half years. There are many components, adapters, software and mobile systems available for the IrDA-1.0 standard on the market now. The same will happen soon for IrDA-1.1 standard with the optoelectronic, analog and digital interface ASIC components already on the market. It is important to understand the difference between IrDA-1.0 and IrDA-1.1 in the physical modulation, protocol, system implementation and external attachment considerations.

Infrared Data Association (IrDA) Infra-red has long been used as a transmission medium for TV/VCR controllers, calculators, printers, and PDAs. In late 1993 an industrial group spearheaded by HP, IBM, and Sharp was founded to promote an industrial standard for Infra-red communications. A short two and half years later, this group, the Infra-red Data Association, has grown to 130 members strong. The membership are international and include component manufacturers, OEMs, hardware and software companies. More impressively, by 1995, many IrDA compliant products are already in the end users' hands. This include IR equipped notebook PCs, PDAs, printers, as well as IR adapters for PCs, printers, etc. According to BIS Strategic Research, by 1996, 85% of the new notebook PCs will have IrDA capability built into the systems. Unlike the earlier IR predecessors which use proprietary protocols, this new crop of IrDA compliant equipments are inter-operative across applications, across manufacturers, and across platforms. The key features of IrDA standard are:
  • Simple and low cost implementation
  • Low power requirement
  • Directed, point-to-point connectivity
  • Efficient and reliable data transfer
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