Wow. I thought it was big news when Atheros announced a new wireless chip yesterday that would combine 802.11n and Bluetooth in a small form factor unit for tablets and other mobile devices. Today we have bigger news: Chip-maker Qualcomm is buying Atheros for $3.1 billion.
Qualcomm is best known for making low power ARM-based processors that are used in phones, tablets, and other mobile devices. Atheros, on the other hand, builds wireless components for laptops and other computers. The move could seriously increase Qualcomm’s influence in the computing and communications spaces.
The companies expect the deal to close in the first half of the year.
I suppose it’s unlikely that the companies will decide to rebrand as Q&A, but I can dream, right?
For those of you who read technology sites in order to window shop and fantasize about purchases. Move along. There’s no slate here to see here that you can mis-label as a tablet. Sorry.
For people who are interested in technology, business, or the future of mobile computing, this is clearly the most important announcement of CES week and will probably be the most important development of the year as well.
Qualcomm is a major ARM chip manufacturer and a major cellular technology developer, and Atheros is one of the top non-cellular wireless communications manufacturers. Qualcomm already has all of ATIs mobile graphics technology that they acquired from AMD after AMD acquired ATI. This is one scary company if you’re in the mobile computing business.
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