Million dollar multimedia

US-based Broadcom Corporation has acquired privately-held Cambridge, UK-based Alphamosaic, a developer of multimedia processors for the mobile marketplace, in a $120 million deal.

The move follows the company’s June $96 million acquisition of Zyray Wireless, developers of add-on WCDMA baseband processors.

With the acquisitions, Broadcom has either built, or acquired, a portfolio of processor products that include EDGE/GPRS/GSM baseband processors, single-chip Bluetooth and 802.11 products, WCDMA baseband processors and, now, multimedia processors.

UK-based Alphamosaic scored an important design win when its first-generation VC01 multimedia co-processor was selected for use in the new Samsung cellular handset. Commercially available Samsung phones now incorporate the VC01 for advanced multimedia functions including MP3 player, VOD, megapixel-class camera and digital camcorder.

Building on the success of the VC01, Alphamosaic is now sampling its VC02 multimedia processor. The VC02 can display video on 3.5 in colour LCDs and capture 8 megapixel images, making it ideal for watching TV, making videos or taking studio-quality photos on a cellphone.

Alphamosaic’s 57-person team will augment Broadcom’s existing technology group in Cambridge, which focuses on the development of digital signal processing architectures and compilers and embedded software.

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