Nordic Semi expands into Wi-Fi via acquisition
Nordic Semiconductor is expanding its in-house wireless technology expertise into Wi-Fi after acquiring the entire Ensigma Wi-Fi development team and associated Ensigma Wi-Fi IP tech assets from world-leading graphics, vision, and AI processing company, Imagination Technologies.
The acquisition includes a sizeable number of Imagination Technologies employees located in the U.K., Sweden, India, and Taiwan. Of these, around 15% are Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE) specialists who will now strengthen Nordic's existing Bluetooth LE teams as well. "This is a dream come true for Nordic and its customers, particularly in the smart home market," says Nordic CTO, Svein-Egil Nielsen, in a press release. "We at Nordic feel extremely fortunate and excited to have found the perfect Wi-Fi team with decades of state-of-the-art Wi-Fi design experience and expertise from whom we can learn all there is to know about Wi-Fi wireless technology. We believe in owning every link in our product chain, and with the Imagination Wi-Fi team on-board we will now be able to add Wi-Fi hardware and software developed by Nordic from the ground up." "What's just as exciting is the potential synergy between Nordic's low power wireless heritage and the latest low power evolution of Wi-Fi that now allows battery-powered IoT devices," adds Nordic Director of Product Management, Kjetil Holstad. "We will become an active member of the Wi-Fi Alliance, as we have and continue to do with multiple other major standards organizations and bodies, to maximize Wi-Fi's low power wireless application potential using our decades of ultra-low power wireless expertise." While it is too early to comment in any detail on specific product implications of this acquisition, Holstad does disclose that the company intends to create a development platform and environment that unifies all its wireless technologies. "Although Wi-Fi was born in the consumer sector, it is now rapidly gaining traction within the industrial IoT space," says Imagination Technologies CEO, Simon Beresford-Wylie. "With Imagination's strong focus on graphics, vision, and AI processing, we feel our Wi-Fi IP division will thrive much better long-term within a company that has wireless connectivity at its center and where it will become a major focus of strategic, technological, and commercial innovation and growth. I am extremely happy to have found such a good home for the technology and the team at Nordic Semiconductor: It's a perfect match."