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Qualcomm buys Designart Networks to bolster small-cell business

Planning for 4G capacity
Fri Aug 24 2012, 12:10
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CHIP DESIGNER Qualcomm has bought baseband chip designer Designart Networks.

Qualcomm's Snapdragon system-on-chip (SoC) business has propelled the firm's brand into consumer devices, however its core business is still in network infrastructure. The firm has expanded its presence in that market by buying baseband chip design outfit Designart Networks.

Designart Networks designs chips used in small-cell modems for high-bandwidth wireless backhaul that end up in base stations. The firm designs SoCs and provides software for outdoor small-cell base stations.

Craig Barratt, president of Qualcomm Atheros said, "DesignArt and its products will both enhance and accelerate our initiatives to drive increased capacity and coverage in mobile networks. Operators can significantly improve user experience across residential, enterprise and outdoor networks given the greater network efficiencies derived by implementing small cells and heterogeneous networks."

Small-cell base stations allow mobile carriers to increase capacity within a network cell without incurring the high cost of obtaining more spectrum and laying down permanent infrastructure.

Qualcomm said Designart's work on Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks and backhaul will add to its existing range of network infrastructure products. The firm is best known for its work on third generation wireless networks, however as operators start to deploy fourth generation LTE networks, infrastructure equipment vendors such as Qualcomm, Siemens Nokia and Ericsson are scrambling to make sure they get their shares of the vast revenue on offer. µ


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