STMicroelectronics and Soundchip announce substantive collaboration in High Definition Personal Audio™ (HD-PA®)

Innovative powerful silicon components to enable personal audio devices with leading-edge HD-PA-compliant sound performance

Geneva, July 18 2011 – STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications and a leading supplier of high-performance audio ICs, together with Soundchip SA, a Swiss-based electro-acoustics consultancy and originator of the High Definition Personal Audio (HD-PA) reference, announced today a substantive collaboration aimed at bringing HD-PA to market by leveraging their respective strengths in audio system and semiconductor technology, product design and industrialization methods, audio software and sales and marketing.

HD-PA represents an aspirational statement of sound quality for personal audio systems. Unlike other approaches which focus on the quality of sound produced at the source, HD-PA offers a new and authoritative approach for driving innovation in personal audio at the ear, considering and addressing the influence of important environmental factors, including noise.

As a result of this explosive combination of technologies, which include ST’s best-in-class audio IC’s for sound reproduction and noise cancellation, MEMS microphone sensing and Soundchip’s unique audio system technology for sound at the ear, the companies plan to deliver HD-PA Platforms™ and HD-PA Ready™ components that present an unbeatable combination of performance, reliability and speed to market.

The substantive collaboration announced today will see ST license patented personal audio technology from Soundchip, becoming an active champion of the HD-PA reference, while Soundchip will access design software tools from ST and promote ST’s HD-PA Ready silicon.

The intellectual property that ST is licensing from Soundchip provides access to a comprehensive set of technological resources that enable ST to deliver to its customers HD-PA-compliant sound performance in IC’s designed for state of the art headsets and headphones.

“ST is already a global leader in the design and high-volume manufacturing of integrated circuits and MEMS, and we anticipate that by adopting the HD-PA Standard and Soundchip technologies, our devices will provide customers with a thoroughly compelling sound experience,” said Benedetto Vigna, MEMS, Sensor and High-Performance Analog Division General Manager at STMicroelectronics. “Developing HD-PA-compliant devices demands the close association of silicon and acoustics. Our cooperative efforts with Soundchip underpin our commitment to providing customers with market-leading audio technologies.”

Mark Donaldson, Soundchip CEO, said, “Soundchip has a wealth of experience in the design of high-performance audio systems technology for personal audio. Partnering with ST to bring HD-PA to market makes absolute sense as we share a common vision for audio technology at the ear and ST has the ability to transform innovative ideas into world-class silicon available to customers on a global scale.”

ST expects its first HD-PA Ready silicon devices to be available in sampling quantities at the beginning of Q4 2011.