NXP Steps Up Research on Wireless USB

NXP Semiconductors will invest ,90 million (US$124 million) over the next five years to expand the development of Wireless USB products at its research and development (R&D) center in Singapore, the company said Tuesday.

NXP will spend that money to expand the number of researchers working on Wireless USB at the company's Asia Product Innovation Center (APIC), as well as fund those research efforts, said Mark Chisholm, a company spokesman, in an e-mail response to questions. The number of staff that NXP plans to add in Singapore was not immediately available.

"It will be a significant increase to the existing headcount," Chisholm said.

Wireless USB is based on ultra-wideband technology developed by the WiMedia Alliance. The short-range, high-speed networking technology aims to provide transfer speeds of up to 480M bits per second (bps) at a range of 3 meters, and up to 110M bps at 10 meters, although early products are somewhat slower.

NXP is one of the world's biggest providers of USB chips, and the development of those products is led by the company's team in Singapore, due to its geographical proximity to major customers in Asia. The Singapore team will also lead the company's Wireless USB efforts.

"APIC will collaborate with our USB team in the U.S. ... for some aspects of the development, but the majority of R&D will take place in Singapore," Chisholm said.

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