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IPWireless bought for $100m

US wireless broadband vendor, NextWave Wireless, said Monday that it has agreed to purchase UMTS-TDD kit supplier IPWireless for $100m.

An additional consideration of up to $135m will be paid based on the achievement of certain revenue milestones in the 2007 to 2009 timeframe, the companies said.

IPWireless is one of the biggest proponents of TD-CDMA wireless broadband, also known as UMTS-TDD, with a customer base including T-Mobile, Vodafone, Orange, Telefonica, and 3UK.

IPWireless’ TD-CDMA platform has been commercially deployed in more than a dozen countries, including the Czech Republic, New Zealand, Germany, South Africa, Sweden, the UK and the US.

IPWireless also has a mobile TV platform, TDtv, based on the 3GPP Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service (MBMS), which allows UMTS operators to deliver mobile television and other multimedia services using their existing 3G spectrum and networks.

“IPWireless and NextWave will work together to expand IPWireless’ product portfolio to incorporate WiMAX and/or wifi technologies for those service providers and equipment vendors that require such solutions,” said Allen Salmasi, chairman and chief executive officer of NextWave Wireless.

Ovum analyst, Julien Grivolas, notes that even though IPWireless technology is a fully proven mature solution and UMTS-TDD spectrum has been allocated to most of the UMTS operators, there are only a dozen commercial TD-CDMA deployments worldwide.

“Clearly, the lack of industry support remains a weakness for TD-CDMA,” Grivolas said, “and the big question mark remains over whether the combined company will really be able to ensure the wider adoption of TD-CDMA technology in the public mobile operator domain.”


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