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IBM to help advance GigOptix E-band SiGe wireless solutions

GigOptix will use IBM's silicon germanium technology to reduce power, size and increase the integration level of chips

Fabless telecom semiconductor supplier GigOptix has signed a license agreement with IBM to leverage IBM’s SiGe millimetre wave transceiver technology.

The contract is related to GigOptix’s E-band wireless solutions portfolio including its newly released advanced E-band power amplifier.

Internet traffic from mobile devices is forecasted to exceed traffic from wired devices by 2016. The ubiquitous use of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, coupled with the increased use of cloud enabled services, is forcing network operators to upgrade not only their optical networks to 40Gbps and 100Gbps links but also their wireless networks to higher capacity gigabit and multi-gigabit links to satisfy mobile users’ growing demands for data.

“We are very excited about the opportunities that IBM’s SiGe millimetre wave technology enables,” comments Andrea Betti-Berutto, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of GigOptix. “SiGe enables much lower power, smaller size and much higher levels of integration to the current gallium arsenide solutions in the market.”

IBM's SiGe technology, which was developed and enabled by contributions from researchers at IBM's Haifa Research Lab in Israel, provides GigOptix with a proven, scalable and highly integrated SiGe RF platform which the company intends to leverage in a number of innovative directions.

Levering IBM's expertise and many years of development experience provides GigOptix with the opportunity to bring to the market a unique innovative, full suite of technology to enable transforming cost efficient and revolutionary integrated E-band transceiver products.

“Coupling IBM's SiGe with GigOptix’s millimetre wave packaging and high power GaAs amplifiers will enable the high spectral efficiencies and data rates being demanded by network operators on their wireless mobile backhaul networks,” Betti-Berutto adds. “We feel that GigOptix is uniquely positioned in the data communication market offering a complete bundled solution for both high speed optical networks and now high speed wireless E-band links.”

EJL Wireless Research, in its most recent report, forecast E-band point-to-point radio links as being one of the fastest growing segments in the wireless mobile backhaul market with greater than 100% Compounded Annual Growth Rate to 2016.
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