Cambridge-based Forefront RF Secures £ 1.5million to Redefine Smart Devices in the Internet of Everything


Global smartphone sales are expected to reach 1.5 billion units this year, according to research firm Gartner. Faster connectivity, high-quality cameras, and long battery life are believed to be driving this growth. However, it is difficult to design a smartphone that satisfies consumer demand and maintains a sleek form factor. Adding to this design complexity, there is an ever-increasing demand for data from region to region, driving the need for region-specific smartphone variants.

In this scenario, Leading RF, a Cambridge-based factory-less semiconductor company entered the global smartphone market with £ 1.5million in its first round of funding. The investment round was led by Bristol-based Science Creates Ventures, including Foresight Williams Technology, BGF and The Cambridge Angels. The funds will be used to recruit a world-class team to accelerate the launch of its products.

Forefront RF was founded in 2020 by Dr Leo Laughlin, Julian Hildersley and Phil O’Donovan. It is intended to change the way smartphones, wearable devices, and global IoT devices are designed. The revolutionary chip enables connected devices to operate over the growing range of 3G to 6G mobile phone frequency bands.

Harry Destecroix, General Partner at Science Creates Ventures, commented: “We are extremely impressed with the Forefront RF team and their technology, and we are delighted to be working with them and our co-investors. Together, we will enable the company to accelerate its impact on this important global industry. “

New revolutionary chip

Forefront RF cancellation technology redesigns the radio frequency (RF) system into a wireless device, allowing manufacturers to simplify the design and delivery of frequency independent products, while reducing costs and line waste supply.

The chip uses Forefront RF’s Adaptive Passive Cancellation (APC) technology as in noise canceling headphones. Its APC chip replaces banks of RF filters and switches with a low-cost tunable RF circuit. The component uses built-in software to maintain the accuracy of the unique passive self-interference cancellation circuits. Thanks to this, the smartphone receiver can “hear” even the weakest signals while transmitting at full power.

Laughlin commented: “The growth of mobile networks driven by the ever increasing demand for data means that the available frequency bands vary from region to region and, using today’s technology, has driven the need region-specific smartphone variants, each with multiple RF components. The space consumed in each smartphone adds costs and leads to inefficiencies in the supply chain. “

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