Infineon shifts, reorganizes wireless business

German chip and wireless products maker Infineon Technologies AG has reorganized its wireless business by combining four divisions into a newly created Local Area Wireless (LAW) business unit.

The Bluetooth, WLAN (wireless LAN), Wireless Control and DECT/WDCT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications/Worldwide Digital Cordless Telecommunications) product units have been merged in an attempt to strengthen its product portfolio, the Munich, Germany, company said in a statement Thursday.

Rather than invest research and development (R&D) money on products for the DECT and WDCT markets that hold out "little prospect of profitability," the company will redirect its R&D investments in developing products using Bluetooth and WLAN technology, Infineon said.

Due to highly competitive pricing for DECT and WDCT digital cordless products, Infineon has chosen to step back from that market, rather than participate in a price war, though it will "of course continue to fulfill all customer commitments," the company said.

Also on Thursday, Infineon reached a preliminary agreement with the memory-chip maker Nanya Technology Corp., of Taiwan, to jointly build a "next-generation" microchip plant, the companies announced in a joint statement.

Under the terms of the agreement, beginning in October the two semiconductor manufacturers will codevelop advanced 0.09-micron and 0.07-micron production technologies for 300 millimeter wafers, Infineon and Nanya said. The companies will share the development costs, they said.

Infineon and Nanya have also agreed to establish a 50/50 joint venture for the production of DRAM (dynamic RAM) chips and to build a new joint 300mm facility in Taiwan, the companies said.

The announcement came on the same day that Infineon competitor Micron Technology Inc. said it had given up on attempting to acquire the DRAM operations of Hynix Semiconductor Inc.

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