HiWave Technologies (http://www.hi-wave.com/), a provider of electronic and transducer solutions for audio and haptic touch, has announced an acoustic module designed to be incorporated into tablet computer sleeves to deliver enhanced quality and volume audio compared with the size-compromised internal loudspeakers in tablet computing devices.

The HIAM-SS2S “SoundSleeve” module comprises a pair of 2W peak audio power exciters attached to a lightweight honeycomb panel to create stereo sound. The panel is mounted into a thin-profile, protective shell, forming a functional module that developers of accessories for iPad and other tablet computers can integrate into a sleeve or cover for the devices.

Designers can incorporate amplifier and interface electronics into the module by positioning a printed circuit board and battery pack into the cavity provided in the shell. For high-end applications, HiWave is working on the development of its Audium amplifier chip and a reference design. This will purportedly optimize audio quality using the on-chip audio processing core to equalize (EQ) the signal to take into account the materials and assembly of any SoundSleeve design.

The Audium chip’s signal processing capability can also be used to further enhance low-frequency performance and widen the stereo effect from a small format tablet sleeve, says HiWave CEO James Lewis. The tablet becomes a “personal cinema,” he adds.

“With tablet computing led by Apple’s iPad now finding a place in so many people’s daily lives, there is a rapidly growing market for protective sleeves that also deliver top quality audio for entertainment and conferencing to the tablet user on the move,” Lewis says.

HiWave is sampling its HIAM-SS2S SoundSleeve module to major customers now and production ramp will be September to meet the Christmas market demand. Indicative pricing for 1K volumes will be around US$12.