TWS headset observation: chip is the key to future development

Dongguan Tenwin Electronic Technology Co.Ltd

When it comes to the current electronic industry, wireless charging and TWS are absolutely hot topics that can not be underestimated. Without the transmission line, the headset can connect to the mobile phone, play music and talk on the phone as long as it uses the Bluetooth function. This is the real wireless Bluetooth headset TWS (true wireless stereo).


The chip module in TWS plays an important role. Further disassembly of the components, including the processor, Bluetooth chip, power management chip, MEMS microphone, MEMS accelerometer and so on, will make it easier for you to use.

Most of the processors and Bluetooth have been integrated, adopting 5.0 specification

In the chip module, due to the smaller and smaller size requirements, the trend of processor and Bluetooth chip integration is clear. Most of the Bluetooth functions in TWS now adopt 5.0 specification. Chip design companies will develop new products and provide different solutions to customers according to 5.0 architecture. The industry believes that 5.0 has the characteristics of longer distance and more data transmission than 4.0, but for TWS, the distance between the mobile phone and TWS is not too far, and the data is only music files. Therefore, the important feature is the stability and security of data transmission, which can increase the listening experience.

Among the 5.0 specifications, mesh, one of the technologies favored by TWS manufacturers, is one of the characteristics of Bluetooth. For example, devices can be connected to each other without Wi Fi, so that headphones in different spaces can be connected, and multiple people can have voice conference or group call at the same time. All these are the trends that can replace the use of software call applications in the future.

MEMS microphone and sensor added function

With the rapid upgrading of mobile devices, the demand for voice function is increasing. In TWS, MEMS microphone is absolutely the key. The so-called MEMS microphone is made of semiconductor process, including two chips of ASIC and sensor, and covered with metal or plastic shell to form a cavity. There will be a small hole in the cavity, or up or down, which is the channel for sound to enter. After receiving the sound, Then it is transmitted to the processor for data analysis.

However, MEMS manufacturers and processor manufacturers maintain close cooperation relationship. In addition to stable supply, the key to expand market share is to develop new products and functions continuously. For example, brand customers can further develop new products from MEMS technology, or MEMS manufacturers can know market demand from brand customers, which can make technology and demand closer.

In 2011, the market volume of MEMS microphones was 1 billion, which gradually replaced the traditional ECM microphones every year. By 2018, the market volume has exceeded 5.4 billion. In 2019, it is expected to reach a high growth rate of 6 billion. In 2021, it is expected to reach the shipping level of 7.5 billion. This is mainly due to the addition of voice functions by mobile devices. Therefore, the demand for MEMS microphones is accelerated.

In addition to the microphone, the TWS also has a MEMS accelerometer, which is a kind of sensing element. It can detect the user's posture change, and then make corresponding actions, such as turning on the wake-up device after tapping the headset. In addition, the bone conduction sensing element is also a kind of accelerometer, especially in headphones and microphones, which can eliminate a lot of noise with the sensing element, so as to enhance the use experience.

In addition to accelerometers, there are a variety of sensing elements, including pressure gauges, gyroscopes, and so on. Let's see what projects headphone manufacturers will add to them in the future, so as to increase market highlights and promote TWS industry to reheat.

In the future, the technology of MEMS microphone and sensor chip will continue to develop towards the trend of low power consumption and high efficiency, especially in the terminal applications, which are mainly portable devices. Power consumption is the focus of consumers. Whether the device can maintain stable use can make the power consumption lower. Especially with more and more TWS functions, the use of components will also increase. The total power consumption of each component may increase the power consumption of the device. Therefore, whether the design of each chip can simplify the winding and improve the process is the direction of continuous research and development in the future.

TWS market big future new function is the key to growth

The market of TWS is expanding gradually. Everyone from apple to non Apple wants to carve up this market. Whether new functions can be added to TWS in the future, such as wireless charging, waterproof and other functions, is also the focus of the outside world.

At present, chip manufacturers are developing with customers to put wireless charging chips into headphones. At present, TWS charges the headphones with a charging box, which has wireless charging function. After the headphones are added, they can take the headphones off and put them directly on the charging board for charging, which saves trouble. In the future, the headphones may regard the waterproof function as an important function, Therefore, the significance of wireless charging is also increased.

Inventory of existing TWS solution providers

In the current TWS headset market, the most mature one is undoubtedly Apple's airpods.

According to the relevant suppliers, the most mature technology is CSR, the giant of Bluetooth audio market (acquired by Qualcomm in August 2015), which is also one of the most mainstream TWS solutions in the current market;

At present, the Bluetooth audio market accounts for a relatively large proportion. In terms of cost and technology, Airoha (owned by MediaTek and acquired by MTK in February 2017) is more acceptable to the public.

Next are hengxuan BES and Realtek. Hengxuan is a company founded in 2015. At present, a number of large domestic manufacturers are using bes23 series for development, including Huawei II. It is said that hengxuan chip has good sound quality.

The advantage of Taiwan Realtek is that it is more in line with the low power consumption of TWS headphones.

Other companies include: Zhuhai actduino, Guangzhou Anyka, Shanghai BK, Zhuhai AC, RDA, bluetrum, etc. they started relatively late, but they can also get a share of the TWS audio market.

In addition, pixart, Taiwan, which has been rising rapidly recently, is also a "troublemaker" in this market.

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