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SmartHub™ Products

A SmartHub IC is a USB hub that integrates system-level functions typically associated with a separate microcontroller (MCU) or processor. It provides an extra port to handle host communication outside of USB. This enables the host to interact with peripheral components under the USB umbrella without the need for special bridge ICs. The downstream port used with the external bridge IC can now be made available for other USB functionality. We offer USB 2.0 and USB 3.1 SmartHub ICs that feature I/O bridging and FlexConnect port swapping and switching technologies to deliver expanded functionality, provide a more robust data interface and reduce BOM cost for applications such as:

  • Sub-system connectivity (wireless modules, POS peripherals, GPIO)
  • Laptop docks
  • PC monitor docks
  • Multi-function USB 3.1 Gen 1 peripherals

Why Choose a SmartHub IC?

  • Expands I/O capabilities beyond  traditional USB 2/3 signaling
  • Integrates functionality to reduce BOM costs
  • Simplifies hardware design
  • Provides flexibility to switch host connectivity between ports  as needed
  • Offers One-Time Programmable (OTP) memory for customization of hub ports
  • Supported by MPLAB® Connect Configurator for customization and mass programming of devices
  • Available configuration straps eliminate the need to program devices at all

Key Functions of SmartHub ICs

Bridging Over USB for I/O Expansion

  • Enables the host to communicate to a non-USB peripheral over USB through a simple set of APIs
    • I2C, SMBus, SPI, UART, GPIO
  • Saves the added expense of using a separate bridging IC to manage the non-USB peripheral
  • Eliminates the need to use a downstream USB port to interface to the bridging IC
SmartHub IC I/O Bridging vs Traditional I/O Bridging Block Diagram

Dynamic Host Switching: FlexConnect Feature

  • Enables system to be configured to switch between two USB hosts
    • Switch can be enabled through a GPIO pin, a USB host command or via pre-boot configuration code
    • Remaining downstream devices will re-enumerate with new host once switch has been made
  • Saves the added expense of using a separate 2:1 switch outside the hub
  • Simplifies implementation through use of dedicated GPIO pins and the ability to set registers or use custom APIs
SmartHub IC FlexConnect vs Traditional Flex Architecture Block Diagram

SmartHub IC Numbering:

USB 2.0 SmartHub Products by Family*

USB 2.0 SmartHub™ IC FamilyHSIC UpstreamFlexConnectI/O BridgingPackage
USB2532/33/34 Port 0, 1I2C, SPI, UART, GPIO36-pin QFN
USB4604/24HSICPort 0, 1I2C, SPI, UART, GPIO48-pin QFN
USB4715 All PortsI2C, SPI, UART, GPIO, I2S™48-pin QFN
USB3813/USB3613HSICPort 0, 1I2C, SPI, UART, GPIO30-ball CSP

*USB2512B-M2/USB2513B-M2/USB2514B-M2, and USB2422 are standard hubs without SmartHub IC features.

USB 3.x SmartHub Products by Family

USB 3.x SmartHub™ IC FamilyUSB-C PortsFlexConnectI/O BridgingPackage
USB5734/42/44 Port 0, 1I2C, SPI, UART, GPIO56-pin QFN
64-pin QFN
USB5806/07/16/26USB-C® DownPort 0, 1I2C, SPI, UART, GPIO100-pin QFN
USB5906/16/26USB-C Up and DownPort 0, 1I2C, SPI, UART, GPIO100-pin QFN
USB7002USB-C Up and DownAll PortsI2C, SPI, UART, GPIO, I2S™100-pin QFN
USB7050/51/52/56
USB-C Up and Down
Integrated Power Delivery
All PortsI2C, SPI, UART, GPIO, I2S100-pin QFN
USB7202/06/16/52Gen 2
USB-C Up and Down
All PortsI2C, SPI, UART, GPIO, I2S100-pin QFN
USB7250P/51P/52P/56PGen 2
USB-C Up and Down
Integrated Power Delivery
All PortsI2C, SPI, UART, GPIO, I2S100-pin QFN