US authorities have blocked a proposed $330 million acquisition deal, with the buy out of PLX Technology creating a “near-monopoly” for Integrated Device Technology (IDT).
The Federal Trade Commission has put an end to the deal which it ruled would create an unfair advantage in the production and sale of PCIe switches, components which perform connectivity functions in electronic devices.
According to US authorities, IDT and PLX are the two biggest players in the PCIe market, worth $100 million a year globally.
The FTC said that the two companies are currently each other’s closest and most direct competitors. By joining together in a $330 million merger deal agreed in April 2012, the resultant company would own 85 percent of the PCIe market.
In the past customers have capitalised on the rivalry between the two component firms to drive down prices, but the proposed deal would eliminate this competition, potentially affecting value and quality. The rivalry has also resulted in more innovative features and better customer service.
“PCIe switches are important components in many computing, communications and consumer products,” said Richard Feinstein, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition.
“The combination of IDT and PLX would hurt competition and lead to higher switch prices, lower innovation in the marketplace, and reduced customer service.”
Analogue chipmaker Integrated Device Technology has revealed that it will be developing a transmitter and receiver chipset for Intel products.
According to Reuters, the idea is that the Intel chipsets will be able to charge a mobile phone placed next to them.
The wireless charging integrated circuits, or little chips that will be used mainly in smartphones, Intel’s Ultrabook mini notebooks and computers.
Integrated Device said that Intel’s cash will help cut costs and improve the product development,
Mary Huang, an executive at Intel, said that it will be jolly useful for punters to have wire-free charging so that they can run keyboards, mice, storage devices, cameras and smartphones without needing to constantly recharge or replace batteries.
The move is part of Chipzilla’s attempts to make PC’s more consumer friendly and work alongside mobile products. Currently if you want to charge your phone wirelessly you have to place it on a pad directly on the ultrabook or laptop.
Intel wants to develop the technology so that the energy is broadcast over a slightly longer distance to make it less dependant on proximity to the Ultrabook or PC. If it manages it, it could mean the end of having to plug in electronic gear for a recharge, so long as it is near your workstation.
Something about Integrated Device Technology has caught Qualcomm’s interest, as it has just bought the design teams from the Hollywood Quality Video and Frame Rate Conversion video processing product lines.
The buy will boost Qualcomm’s patent portfolio, and it claims to have also bought “certain related assets to Qualcomm” but does not detail them. Qualcomm hasn’t replied to our query at time of publication.
Qualcomm also does not reveal how much it paid for IDT’s teams and technology.
It does say that it thinks Hollywood Quality Video will give it a leading edge in video processing. Qualcomm believes the technology is a good fit with Snapdragon and you’ll find it twinned with integrated HQV in devices to come.
IDT claims that the HQV helps quickly work out HD images quickly using things like 1080i to 1080p HD deinterlacing. It also says it puts SD content close to HD by using pixel detail enhancement and noise reduction to get rid of unwanted artifacts after compression.
Integrated Device Technology has launched what it says is the world’s first DisplayPort based device which allows users to connect up to four monitors to a single DisplayPort connection.
The IDT VMM1400 multi-monitor controller is compatible with the VESA DisplayPort v1.1a and HDMI v1.3. It uses one DisplayPort input port and four HDMI or DVI output ports.
It also lets users connect up up to four monitors from a single digital output port. The output can be configured to be in expand mode or clone mode across four displays, which means users can shift between apps such as gaming, graphics design or spreadsheet analysis. Users can also dedicate each monitor to a separate application.
When configured for expanded resolution, the IDT VMM1400 can treat all attached monitors as one single monitor. When the user selects a display resolution that is the same or smaller than the original monitor’s native resolution, the IDT VMM1400 will send identical PC screens to each attached monitor.
In hub mode, the VMM1400 supports four HDMI or DVI outputs that can display on up to four monitors. In “daisy chain” mode, the ViewXpand device supports a connection to downstream devices – for example, another VMM1400 – to form the daisy chain of monitors compatible with the current DisplayPort standard. It is also said to automatically detect the number of monitors connected and adjusts the resolution accordingly.
Ji Park, vice president and general manger of the Video and Display Operation at IDT, said: “When you spread a PC or consumer platform across up to four screens, you can see more, toggle windows less, make clearer decisions, accomplish more work in less time and generally have an improved user experience.”