Qualcomm and WCDMA Chipset Analysis


The Motley Fool has pulled out an analysis of Qualcomm's WCDMA chipset efforts from one of its online boards and it's pretty detailed and full of good info of both it and its competitors like Nokia and TI:

I look (perhaps overly optimistically) for Nokia to have the first commercial 3GSM WCDMA handset powered by an ARM11 processor, just as they were first with ARM9, and (I think ARM7), but probably in a custom design, rather than using OMAP 2, and the Japanese may scoop them on this go round.

We should be getting visibility shortly from Qualcomm on when they plan to sample the ARM11 powered multi-engine 7000 series, but I'm guessing commercial product shipping in handsets is at least a year out, maybe 1½ years. In the interim the MSM6250 now sampling looks like a very fine product and will power the initial releases by Samsung, LGE, and others, and the MSM6275 which is yet to sample will incorporate the HSDPA extension of WCDMA.

A prime differentiator of TI v. Qualcomm other than the fact that TI owns their own fabs, does their own packaging, and is very advanced in process design, is that they do custom designs for companies with in house development, and they also sell a variety of independent module components that interact with others chipsets, and along with ARM, ST Micro, and Nokia are driving open applications interface architecture in the MIPI alliance who now has over 40 members, with Motorola and Intel on the MIPI board. They are also the primary platform (along with Intel) employed by licensees of Microsoft's MS Smartphone OS, and provide chipsets for the majority of Symbian OS 2.5G devices shipping, and it's important to note that one Symbian 3G product is shipping (Fujitsu) and Motorola recently announced a Symbian based UMTS smartphone.

I put some emphasis on TI here in this post not only because you mentioned them specifically, but also because I firmly believe that TI will be Qualcomm's primary short, medium, and long haul competitor either with custom designs (Nokia, Ericsson, etc), highly integrated off the shelf application processors coupled with others baseband (NEC, Matsushita, Fujitsu, etc.), or fully integrated chipsets for OEMs and ODMs. I feel it is always wise NOT to underestimate competent competitors.

I love reading this stuff because I see the big Q as being pretty much in the driver's seat when it comes to 3G technologies - and since I'm a *big* believer in how huge 3G is going to be when it starts arriving in the next year or so, it just makes me awe at how much Qualcomm is going to be in control, regardless of this posts focus on the fact that it has competent competitors. I'm not alone in this thought, as Qualcomm's stock has just continued to rise since I last wrote about them in January.

See the full article for more. Invest in QCOM baby...


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