Microsemi Delivers AcuEdge Development Kit for Amazon Alexa

Semiconductor provider Microsemi has launched the AcuEdge Development Kit for Amazon Alexa Voice Service (AVS), delivering enhanced audio processing to improve voice recognition in adverse audio environments. The kit is designed to enable third-party developers and manufacturers to evaluate and incorporate Alexa functionality in human-to-machine applications, while interfacing with the Microsemi Timberwolf ZL38063 multi-mic audio processor.

"The Microsemi AcuEdge Development Kit for Amazon AVS offers a scalable platform enabling developers to quickly and cost-effectively achieve their design criteria requiring two mics," said Shahin Sadeghi, marketing director at Microsemi, in a statement.

Microsemi's Timberwolf is enabled with compressor/limiter/expander (CLE) microphone pickup algorithms, beam forming, and stationary and non-stationary noise reduction, enabling voice control and speech recognition not only from a distance but also in the presence of adverse noise and audio sounds. The complete kit features a Timberwolf evaluation board with two microphones capable of operating in both 180-degree and 360-degree audio pickup modes. The evaluation board is equipped with the Raspberry Pi connector.

"Amazon's goal is for developers and device makers to have access to a wide range of reference solutions that fit their needs," said Priya Abani, director of Amazon's Alexa Voice Service, in a statement. "We're excited to be working with Microsemi to provide device manufacturers with a way to quickly and easily integrate Alexa into their products across a variety of form factors, including wall-mounted and on-table devices, smart speakers, and connected home products."

While the Raspberry Pi runs the Amazon AVS client and Alexa wake word detection, the Timberwolf solution runs all front-end audio processing to improve speech recognition accuracy. The signal processing technology implemented by the Timberwolf audio processor includes the following:

  • Noise reduction;
  • Beam forming;
  • Barge-in support;
  • CLE mic pickup;
  • Full duplex two-way audio;
  • Stereo acoustic echo cancellation; and
  • Direct mic interface as well as Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) and Inter-IC Sound (I2S)/time-division multiplexing (TDM) connection to the Raspberry Pi.

The Microsemi AcuEdge Development Kit for Amazon AVS is generally available through distributors Arrow and Future Electronics. It retails for $299.

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