Synaptics Untethers Users with Wireless Docking

By Rich Nass

Executive Vice President

Embedded Computing Design

February 08, 2022


Image Provided by Synaptics

The Holy Grail for mobile workers has always been the ability to dock their laptop (and other mobile devices) wirelessly. Wired docking has been around for decades and provides many advantages to the mobile user. Taking that application one step further and removing the physical connections has many advantages, but admittedly, it’s a non-trivial feat.

Synaptics recently announced a reference platform, dubbed Gemini, that offers a true wireless dock, using WiFi 6/6E. Gemini is a hardware-software solution that can add dual 4K displays in an environment that’s virtually indistinguishable from a wired dock. All the user needs to do is be within range of the hardware to create the desired untethered experience.

The suite of hardware and software elements includes the radio (BCM43752), a video interface IC with DisplayLink dynamic graphics compression (DL-1950), a media-agnostic USB (MA-USB) interface that allows all devices to connect to the dock side while managing messaging over WiFi, and a network processor SoC that manages the radios and performs the MA-USB virtualization.

While Gemini initially focuses on notebook PC docking, the technology is applicable across other devices, such as tablets, gaming, and VR platforms that require point-to-point, high-fidelity, multi-stream video-over-wireless. The Gemini wireless dock reference design is available now.

Richard Nass’ key responsibilities include setting the direction for all aspects of OSM’s ECD portfolio, including digital, print, and live events. Previously, Nass was the Brand Director for Design News. Prior, he led the content team for UBM’s Medical Devices Group, and all custom properties and events. Nass has been in the engineering OEM industry for more than 30 years. In prior stints, he led the Content Team at EE Times,, and TechOnLine. Nass holds a BSEE degree from NJIT.

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