Fujitsu, NEC And DoCoMo Create A Chip Design Company
Japanese tech manufacturers unite to take on Qualcomm in the mobile chip market
Japanese electronics manufacturers Fujitsu, NEC and DoCoMo today announced a partnership that will result in the creation of a new company – Access Network Technology (ATN) – to focus on smartphone chip design and sales.
The main objective of the joint venture is to compete with Qualcomm, the world’s largest mobile chip manufacturer, and its Snapdragon platform.
Godzilla versus engineers from Kanagawa
The new company will have about 85 employees and will be based in Kanagawa, Japan. It will begin operations in August, as soon as all of the participants invest the necessary funds.
Similarly to British firm ARM, ANT will focus on research and development, and outsource production. It will design chips that control wireless communications and signals, including products for high-speed Long-Term Evolution (LTE) networks and beyond.
“The technologies individually held by the companies, as well as the results of their joint development work, offer a huge competitive advantage in the smartphone market, which is expected to experience an even greater global expansion,” said a statement by DoCoMo.
Fujitsu will own the majority stake at the company (52.8 percent), NTT DoCoMo will get 19.9 percent and NEC will acquire 17.8 percent. Fujitsu’s Semiconductor division will own the remaining 9.5 percent.
According to Reuters, ANT will aim to gain seven percent of global market share for smartphone chips by 2014.
The three founding companies could have been joined by Panasonic and South Korean firm Samsung. However, the deal was called off this April after the participants failed to agree on partnership terms.
The same month, Qualcomm had announced it was preparing a quad-core version of its Snapdragon S4 chip to be used in Windows 8 laptops, which would expand its reach beyond the smartphone market.
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