LTE Chip Makers fight for lead

in Blog, LTE

Mobile Chip makers are fighting for the lead in emerging market opened by LTE. Qualcomm a leader in this area is maintaning its position but others are also not far behind. with 3G Qualcomm had dominant position for several years but LTE has brought new players in the market.

According to a research firm iSuppli, the main competitors in the baseband market are Qualcomm, MediaTek, ST-Ericsson and Infineon. MediaTek, ST-Ericsson and Infineon all are trying to erode Qualcomm’s dominant position.

4G chipset manufacturers, such as Broadcom, Infineon and Qualcomm, have established LTE product development plans. In addition, market entrants, such as Altair Semiconductor, Beceem, BitWave, Comsys, Sequans and Wavesat, are hoping the shift to LTE opens new opportunity. LTE chip market have attracted other entrants, including big mobile phone makers Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics as well. 

According to Reuters, Renesas, the world's No. 5 chipmaker, aims to represent as much as a third of the global LTE chip market. Deutsche Bank analyst Brian Modoff, who sees steep investment requirements for LTE chip development, said his next LTE bets after Qualcomm are MediaTek and ST-Ericsson.

If Intel enters the market after buying Infineon's wireless business as the market expects, it should have enough resources to seriously challenge Qualcomm.

Last year Qualcomm announced first chipsets for dual-carrier HSPA+ and multi-mode 3G/LTE and claimed to offer first multi-mode 3G/LTE chipsets  MDM9200â„¢ and the MDM9600â„¢.

ST-Ericsson's Multimode LTE/HSPA/EDGE M710 chipset is also commercially available and targets high performance modem devices such as USB dongles, PC-cards and built in modems.

Many vendors are using software-defined radio (SDR) technology for LTE chips. Infineon’s SDR20 is based on this technology. Altair Semiconductor's FourGee-3100 LTE baseband processor supports LTE category 3 (CAT-3) throughputs (100Mbps/50Mbps DL/UL respectively).

Sequans SQN3010 offers baseband SOC (based on 3GPP R8 standard supporting UE category 3 throughput of 100 Mbps in a 20 MHz channel, and LTE band classes 38 and 40). China Mobile selected Sequans to provide TD-LTE chips and USB dongles for the world’s first TD-LTE demonstration network that China Mobile will deploy at World Expo 2010 in Shanghai.

Beceem Communications recently announced that it's BCSi500 chip supports seamless, multi-mode operation of WiMAX and LTE, including live handoffs between the two technologies.

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