Qualcomm Inc has paid $36 million cash for cellular handset user interface developer Trigenix Ltd as it steps up its effort to secure a foothold in the European WCDMA market with its Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless (BREW) platform.
With the Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless (BREW) client free with Qualcomm chipsets, the company is pouring huge resources into penetrating Europe and Peggy Johnson, president of Qualcomm Internet services, said she was encouraged by trials currently underway in the laboratories of European carriers.
The company is banking on carriers’ determination to offer differentiated products. Trigenix CEO Steve Ives said that with the aid of his company’s software, carriers could cut by half the year it currently takes to bring a new handset to market.
Cambridge, UK-based Trigenix, formerly known as 3G Lab, has developed technology that separates the user interface of handset applications from the application itself, allowing for brand-specific interfaces without needing to recode the application.
By adding this to the existing BREW toolkit, Qualcomm believes it will boost the ability of carriers and handset makers to custom build core phone functions such as address books, messaging menus, navigation methods, color schemes and icon styles.
Trigenix, which supplies 15 carriers in Europe, including T-Mobile and Hutchison 3G 3 network in the UK, began working with Qualcomm in June to develop a version of its software for the BREW platform.
Start-up Trigenix, which was formed in 2000, has received two rounds of venture funding totalling 5 million pounds ($8.9 million) from venture capitalists 3i.