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5 March 2007


Proliferation of W-EDGE puts pressures on smaller component makers

W-EDGE has emerged as the de facto standard for new handsets, as exemplified by the blizzard of new W-EDGE transceivers announced at the 3GSM World Congress 2007 in Barcelona, Spain, according to the Strategy Analytics report “New Transceivers at 3GSM '07 Mark the Ascendance of W-EDGE”.

New transceivers for W-EDGE announced by component suppliers ranged from small, highly integrated two-transceiver solutions to completely integrated baseband-transceiver systems on chip (SoCs).

“Transceiver makers have aggressively embraced multi-band W-EDGE, a move that, until recently, they had considered with trepidation given the uncertainties of the market and the technical challenges,” says Christopher Taylor, director, RF & Wireless Components for Strategy Analytics. W-EDGE handsets can operate across multiple regions by supporting W-CDMA, EDGE and legacy GSM and GPRS modes.

“The complexity of new radio components for W-EDGE handsets has pushed the leading suppliers into two camps: those that specialize in power amplifiers bundled with transceivers as an optimized solution, and those that offer ultra-compact, multi-band transceivers and matching basebands fabricated with the latest CMOS technology,” adds Stephen Entwistle, VP of the Strategy Analytics Strategic Technologies Practice. “Playing in this market has gotten more challenging with W-EDGE, especially for smaller players that lack system expertise.”