Broadcom has been the quietest of the large mobile baseband semiconductor companies when it comes to news about 4G chipset products. It has been working on integrating LTE into its baseband chipset plans and has been rumored to be working on WiMAX chipsets on the side, in case the WiMAX market were to become significant enough for Broadcom to take part in it.
"Broadcom has deliberately chosen a company that is increasingly focused on chipsets supporting both WiMAX and LTE to keep open the widest range of new business opportunities possible," says ABI Research director Philip Solis. "Also, Beceem had roughly half of the WiMAX market in 2009 and has historically had all of Clearwire's and Sprint's non-handset business. This acquisition opens up potential business with device vendors directly or indirectly involved with Clearwire, including Sprint, cable companies, and Best Buy."
By acquiring Beceem, Broadcom has accelerated its time-to-market through a "snap-on" 4G solution for its existing 2G/3G chipsets, while at the same time hedging its bets by being able to support both 4G technologies if and when service providers move from WiMAX to LTE.
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