xMEMS Demonstrates True MEMS Speaker for Earphone Applications

August 7 2019, 10:25
xMEMS Labs, a MEMS solutions startup headquartered in Los Altos, California, announced the demonstration of a novel MEMS speaker for earphone applications. This demo, according to the company, showcases not only the benefits of MEMS technologies with small size and low power consumption, but also its scalable design that will enable applications in many markets. The company, which has not yet revealed specifics on their MEMS speaker technology, claims to have developed a complete MEMS process that reduces manufacturing complexities.

As xMEMS points out in its announcement, there are no-known commercial “true” MEMS speakers in the market today. Unlike true MEMS processes, the handful of other MEMS solutions so far demonstrated "only replaced the conventional voice coil actuator with MEMS. They do not resolve/reduce the complexity of speaker manufacturing. xMEMS’ speaker integrates the membrane and actuator making it uniquely capable for high-volume MEMS manufacturing."

As the company also explains, the demonstrated MEMS speakers are easily “scalable” as they are designed and constructed into several “speaker cells”. The application’s SPL requirement will define the number and arrangement of “speaker cells” requirement. For example, a handful of “speaker cells” may be sufficient for earbud application, but for smartphone application, it may require more of these “speaker cells”.
In its website, xMEMS details the main advantages for its MEMS speaker technology, highlighting its ability to reach a range of frequencies as low as 20Hz at at least half the size of a conventional dynamic microspeaker.
xMEMS Labs patent for an "Air Pulse Generating Element and Sound Producing Device"

The micro speaker market is $8.7B by itself, according to Yole Développement in 2017. “This is a breakthrough technology for the vastly underserved speaker market,” says Joseph Jiang, co-founder and CEO of xMEMS Labs, adding, “we are expecting the fast adoption of MEMS speakers to replace conventional coil speakers just like MEMS microphones to replace ECM microphones.”

Founded in January 2018, xMEMS Labs is dedicated to innovating advanced solutions and applications by integrating smart methodologies with MEMS devices for consumer electronics.
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