Shiratech Plans to Shake the 96Board’s Market

28 June, 2018

Shiratech Solutions from Israel recently announced a 96Board LTE based modem card in Europe and the United States. Next step: Bringing Arduino and Raspberry Pi worlds into the 96Board format

Almost unknown company broke lately into the American and the European market with a new LTE modem based on 96Board format, and sold tens of thousands units within a few weeks. The company, called Shiratech Solutions, is working hand in hands with Arrow Electronics to promote a clear vision aimed to shake the 96Board ecosystem and connect it to the growing community of Raspberry’s and Arduino’s developers.

“Once we have identified the need for an LTE module, we immediately entered a rapid development and production process based on Quectel communication chip, resulted in a mezzanine card for DragonBoard 410C modules produced by Arrow for Qualcomm, “said the CEO and CTO Ishay Kokavka (photo above). “To make it a full IoT solution, we also added a pack of sensors such as proximity sensors, accelerometers, optical detectors and thermometers along with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi communication capabilities.”

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Shiratech is not a new player in the SBC/SOM market. For years it was a small player in the SMARC (Smart Mobility ARChitecture) market. But earlier this year it was sold to AY Electronics, an Israeli supply chain management company, that was looking for an opportunity in manufacturing and engineering. Owned by Itay and Yaniv Rod, AY holds 25% stake in Partner Manufacturing, an Electronics Manufacturing Services provider from Petah Tikva near Tel Aviv.

In order to expand its services and going deeper into the engineering, AY recruited Yishai Kokavka (photo above) about a year ago to the position of VP for Technologies. Kokavka brougtht to the position many years of experience, including the management of hardware group in Motorola Israel, Radware, and hundreds of industrial projects performed by its own company, KTEC. About six months ago AY acquired the IP and the distribution agreements of Shiratech with Arrow Electronics and started its transformation.

Shiratech's LTE Modem in 96Board Format
Shiratech’s LTE Modem in 96Board Format

“In the SMARC format we are focused on specific products that are not available now in the market,”‘ Kokavka told Techtime. “The 96Board format is very important for us because it is an open standard that competes with Raspberry Pi and Arduino and is supported by strong players like Qualcomm and Arrow.”

Lately Shiratech has completed a new card which may bring peace between these three communities: A 96Board module with Intel’s MAX-10 FPGA chip. Beside the known benefits of programmable chips as an alternative to ASIC development, the new card brings the software and add on components of Raspberry Pi and Arduino into the world of 96Board. “Our goal is to sell approximately one million SOM and SBC cards a year,” said Kokavka. “For SMARC costumers we will be super competitive: If the market price of a standard card in $50 – we will sell it for $35.”

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