By 泰德·史蒂文森
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上个月初,加利福尼亚州圣克拉拉 Atheros通讯 和圣地亚哥 高通公司 宣布达成一项协议,以开发Atheros的移动无线电芯片(ROCm)单芯片Wi-Fi解决方案与QUALCOMM的两个移动站调制解调器(MSM)蜂窝芯片组之间的互操作性—the MSM6550™ for CDMA2000®网络和用于W-CDMA(UMTS)网络的MSM6280芯片组。合并后的解决方案将使蜂窝设备能够支持802.11g和802.11a / g无线局域网(WLAN)技术。

在巴塞罗那举行的3GSM世界大会上(2月12日)—15), the two companies demonstrated their joint solution to about two dozen handset vendors, mobile carriers, and other interested attendees, according to Atheros vice president of marketing, Todd 安特斯. "Reception was very enthusiastic," 安特斯 told VoIPplanet.com。他说:“固定移动融合,UMA(无许可移动访问),IMS(IP多媒体子系统),蜂窝加Wi-Fi开发实际上是展会上最重要的主题之一。”

Of course 无线上网 on mobile phones is not new. "In the smartphone category, I think it's fair to say that 无线上网 is well on its way to becoming a check-box feature," 安特斯 pointed out. (To be clear, 'smartphones' are top-tier devices in the $400 to $600 price range.) "The killer application of 无线上网 for data access cements it as an important feature in the high-end product," he continued.


That, according to 安特斯, is the other point of the partnership: price optimization.

他解释说:“这是一个相当有效的解决方案,其中我们的芯片实际上是由运行所有语音软件的MSM控制的。”—消除了重复的应用程序处理能力,运行多个协议栈以及将Wi-Fi芯片“固定”到蜂窝处理器上的其他低效率问题。 “我们正在尝试启用功能电话类别—试图将Wi-Fi推入移动电话的主流,在这里您谈论的是价格在100到200美元之间的电话,更多的人可以使用它。”

"Based on the size and power that we're able to achieve in our chipset," 安特斯 continued. "It's going to be in products that look very much like your standard cellular phone. It's not going to be a big monstrosity with a huge battery."

无线上网 has a reputation as a power hog, but according to 安特斯, improvements in second and third-generation silicon have reduced power consumption in 无线上网 based phones to the point where "you're beginning to see talk and standby times that far surpass what people are used to with their mobile phones," he told VoIPplanet.com。当然,其中的一些改进是特定于硬件的,其中包括一项称为ASPD的节能技术,该技术在Access Point和客户端中同时使用时,可使Wi-Fi芯片组在多达95%的时间内“休眠”—将耗电量减少10到100倍。

安特斯—和他一直在与许多运营商客户交谈—看到了融合双模(蜂窝/ 无线上网)语音服务的两个“机遇区”:企业和家庭。两者都使用相同的基本策略。在建筑物内,电话使用从经常拥挤的蜂窝网络切换到本地Wi-Fi网络。这可以消除通常困扰室内小区使用的覆盖问题,尤其是在大型企业场所中,并且从蜂窝网络卸载流量使运营商可以降低费率,将节省的费用转嫁给企业—or homeowner.

When will this convergence move out of the demo space into the real world? "We launched the chip (Atheros's ROCm) a little less than a year ago," 安特斯 said, mentioning early interest from customers in the mobile consumer electronics space, as well as mobile communications. "With this QUALCOMM announcement, we expect further growth in mobile communications to accelerate. First customers are starting to ramp into production now. So, late this quarter, next quarter, and probably for the remainder of this year."