ams adds to active noise cancellation (ANC) leadership with Incus Laboratories acquisition

Premstaetten, Austria (19 December, 2016) – ams AG (SIX: AMS), a leading provider of high performance sensor solutions and analog ICs, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Incus Laboratories Ltd, a UK-based privately-held provider of intellectual property (IP) for digital active noise cancellation in headphones and earphones.

The acquisition of Incus strengthens ams’ position in the market for Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) solutions where ams is currently the leading supplier of analog ANC to headphone and earphone OEMs. ams will leverage Incus’ IP, its expertise in acoustic characterization and its suite of noise cancellation system design tools for a new range of digital ANC solutions.

ams’ existing analog ANC products offer excellent acoustic performance and low power consumption while its upcoming digital offerings will provide additional benefits in reduced system cost and size, and improved design flexibility. Backed by Incus’ design tool suite and acoustic characterization technology, ams’ new digital ANC solutions will offer OEMs easier implementation by eliminating the need to configure and assemble a hardware filter network of passive components tailored to each headphone or earphone design.

Incus’ IP can run on a variety of general-purpose DSP cores while providing the core ANC functionality in DSP-based solutions found in many bundled and aftermarket earphones and headphones today. Incus solutions are notable for their high level of noise attenuation across a broad frequency range, benefiting from sophisticated phase-shift technology which compensates for latency in the digital signal processing chain. Incus’ IP also supports the use of advanced speakers and micro-speakers for outstanding Hi-Fi quality audio reproduction.

ams will take full ownership of Incus which is based in Buckinghamshire, UK , including all of its patent-protected IP. The parties to the transaction have agreed to keep the consideration confidential. Incus’ staff, including the founders and executive management team, will transfer to ams. ams will continue the existing Incus IP licensing business and looks forward to working with partners to meet the needs of this expanding market.

"ams already has a strong position in the ANC market given high levels of noise attenuation and superb sound quality", said Vincent Pronk, VP & General Manager of Business Line Audio Sensors. "The proven and high-performance Incus IP for digital noise cancellation will broaden our ANC offering while maintaining our reputation for excellent performance and design characteristics at a competitive cost."

The existing ams portfolio of analog ANC solutions includes products based on feed-forward, feedback and hybrid topologies, in both single-ended stereo and mono bridge tied load (BTL) versions. For more information about the ams range of ANC solutions, go to Active Noise Cancellation.