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Telecom trends such as smooth migration towards higher data rates and higher capacities for multimedia applications, and provision of various services (text, audio, video) from different standards with the same wireless device require integrated designs that work across multiple standards, can easily be reused and achieve maximum hardware share at minimum power consumption. This can be achieved by using adaptive circuits that are able to trade off power consumption for performance on the fly. Realization of the adaptivity function requires scaling of parameters such as current consumption to the demands of the signal-processing task. This paper describes adaptivity design concepts and application of design for adaptivity to multi-standard circuits and systems for wireless communications. An exploratory multi-standard RF front-end is discussed with phase-noise tuning, noise-figure tuning, and input-intercept point tuning requirements of 21 dB, 12 dB, and 7 dB, respectively.