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IPhone Win Sends 3G Signal For TriQuint

With production of the same GaAs-based components used in Apple's iPhone now ramping for inclusion in other handsets, 3G is looking like big business for the Hillsboro, Oregon, company.

As cellphone power amplifier makers begin the run-up to Christmas, TriQuint and Skyworks Solutions have stolen a march on the competition with their inclusion in the iPhone 3G.

The much-anticipated handset included three power amplifier modules from TriQuint and one from Skyworks when it went on sale in 22 countries on July 11.

TriQuint is supplying its Tritium wideband CDMA power amplifier/duplexer modules into the latest iPhone, which also includes Skyworks' SKY77340 quad-band GSM/EDGE PA module.

Greg Quirk of TechInsights, which has published its efforts at dismantling the iPhone 3G, says that he s never seen TriQuint in such a high-profile phone before. “While it is almost impossible to guarantee that a company is a single source for a component, every iPhone 3G that I've seen has them designed in," he told compoundsemiconductor.net.

The summer marks the beginning of the third quarter in which companies enter their big annual production ramp-ups and hope their design wins will give them reason to be jolly come December.

For TriQuint this process in 2008 is particularly focused on 3G GaAs technologies, which are now the largest part of its handset business. The company has just reported its most recent quarterly results, in which revenues from wideband CDMA and EDGE products leaped to $21.5 million, up from $12.3 million just three months previously (see related newsfeed entry).

However, sales for the quarter fell below its original prediction (see related story Lower revenue outlook hits TriQuint shares) due to problems in increasing the output of these very products.

Now TriQuint is estimating at least a $28 million dollar jump to revenues of $155 million, and possibly up to $170 million, for the next quarter. 3G ramps will account for a large part of these forecast gains.

Normally the company would calculate these estimates so that firmly booked orders make a strong 80 percent foundation for the mid-point of its projected revenue range. This quarter, however, booked orders constitute 95 percent of its estimate.

“We are being a bit more deliberate and respectful of these ramps now," said Steve Buhaly, TriQuint s CFO.

Although it is has not yet directly mentioned its inclusion in the iPhone 3G, TriQuint says that the kind of modules it uses sell for around $1.50 each.

Apple says that 1 million iPhone 3G handsets were sold over the first weekend that they were available.

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