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Intel spends $550m on DSP biz

Extends small stake in VxTel to full ownership

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Intel today splashed out $550 million on chip maker VxTel, the latest in a long line of acquisitions it has made in the DSP and comms sectors.

The deal will be paid for with cash, and follows an earlier investment made in the privately-owned VxTel by Intel's financial wing, Intel Capital, one of over 550 the chip giant has made in small companies it views as potential enhancers of its own sales and marketing efforts. IC also handled the acquisition.

VxTel's products enable the transmission of high quality voice data over packet-based networks, specifically those built upon optical infrastructure. That ties in nicely with Chipzilla's attempt to muscle in on the networking systems market, through its Internet Exchange Architecture (IXA).

Last December, Intel and Analog Devices announced a jointly developed DSP product that was "optimised for processing modem, audio, video, image and voice signals". That sounds like something not unlike VxTel's offering, but the AD part is aimed at mobile devices rather than infrastructure products, the target of VxTel's work. Both deals stress, however, just how important DSPs are to Intel's non-micrprocessor business. ®

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