06/01/2012

Broadcom debuts 802.11ac Gigabit chips

Broadcom has announced several chips based on the new 802.11ac specification which supports Gigabit over wireless.

The BCM4360 supports the PCIe interface and wireless speeds of 1.3Gb.s using 3 wireless streams and is suited for access points, routers and PCs.

The BCM4352 (PCIe) and BCM43526 (USB) support 867Mb/s using 2 streams and the BCM43516 (USB) supports 433Mb/s using a single stream. The USB chips are designed to go into mobile devices and things like connected TVs.

802.11ac uses the 5GHz band and 80GHz channels.

There are likely to be several other 802.11ac announcements at CES.

There's also bound to be lots of announcements for 802.11ad which uses the license exempt 60GHz band.

Full (Mind)speed ahead

Mindspeed has acquired Picochip the Bath based company who produce SoC designs for 3G femtocells and LTE cells using software defined radios.

The deal is worth up to $76.8m ($27.8m in cash now with another $25m is the company meets various milestones by 2013). This valuation may seem low as the company has been the leader in 3G femtocell reference designs, but they are coming under heavy competition from big players such as Broadcom and Qualcomm.

All 150 employees should survive the transition to the new owners.