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NVIDIA to acquire baseband vendor Icera

Icera is a leading producer of baseband processors for 3G and 4G cellular phones and tablets

NVIDIA announced today that it has agreed to acquire Icera, a leading producer of baseband processors for 3G and 4G cellular phones and tablets. Icera has more than 550 patents granted or pending worldwide, and its high speed wireless-modem products have been approved by more than 50 carriers across the globe.

The acquisition, for $367 million in cash, has been approved by both companies’ boards of directors and is expected to be completed, subject to customary closing conditions, in approximately 30 days.

By offering the two main processors used in smartphones–the application processor and baseband processor, the combined company will help OEM customers improve their time to market and deliver requirements of next-generation mobile computing.  NVIDIA will also have approximately doubled its revenue opportunity within each product segment.

The market for baseband processors is one of the fastest growing segments of the technology industry, worth an estimated $15 billion a year.  Icera will be able to leverage NVIDIA’s momentum in the smartphone and tablet markets to capitalize on this growth.

Icera is a pioneer in next-generation, multi-protocol wireless baseband processors with RF components. Its technology scales from 2G to 4G networks, using a custom-built, ultra-low-power processor. The company’s third-generation Livanto line of chipsets delivers the industry’s fastest data rates, has short user wait times, reduces battery drain and supports multiple standards on the same hardware. Its forthcoming Espresso®450 and Espresso®500 line of platforms is meant for 2G, 3G and 4G networks, low-power optimization for voice and high-speed data, and industry’s smallest form factor.

NVIDIA awakened the world to the power of computer graphics when it invented the GPU in 1999. Its expertise in programmable GPUs has led to breakthroughs in parallel processing which make supercomputing inexpensive and widely accessible.

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