Intel to invest $150 M to fuel wireless technology
WASHINGTON: Wi-Fi technology, also called 802.11, is an emerging technology that provides high-speed wireless Internet access in many locations around the world, including airports, cafes, corporate offices, universities, factories and homes.
"Wi-Fi use is experiencing explosive growth. Estimates show that it could grow to 30 million laptops equipped with Wi-Fi capability in three years," said Intel Executive Vice President and Intel Capital President Les Vadasz.
Intel has made significant investments in a number of wireless programs focused on establishing industry-wide, global technical standards, developing wireless products, and seeding market development. In addition, the company is devoting significant resources and attention to Banias, codename for the first mobile computing technology designed from the bottom up for the unique requirements of mobile PC users. For the first time, it will include dual band 802.11a and 802.11b -- wireless capability as a standard part of combined chipset and processor technology. Banias will be available in the first half of next year.
"Wi-Fi is one of the ripest areas for innovation in the industry," said Pat Gelsinger, Intel Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. "Intel will continue to play a key role in its development through investments, research, industry programs and products."
Intel Capital, Intels strategic investment program, has already invested approximately $25 million in more than 10 companies in this space.
The Intel Communications Fund, managed by Intel Capital, was established in September 1999 and focuses on accelerating Intel voice and data communications initiatives. The $500 million fund will devote $150 million specifically for investment in Wi-Fi companies worldwide. The Intel Communications Fund has made more than 80 investments in 17 countries on five continents.
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