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List of Wi-Fi Chipset Vendors

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Companies that offer Wi-Fi chipsets (i.e. actual silicon): notable dates,
name of first Wi-Fi chipset, merger and acquisitions, current status.

Active[edit]

Chipset Vendor First
Release
Date
Active a b g n ac ad ax
Atmel
1984: Founded
1999: First Wi-Fi chip (AT76C501 802.11b MAC) [1]
2012: Acquired Ozmo Devices (WiSoCs)
2014: Acquired Newport Media (WiSoCs)
Currently offers 802.11 abgn SoCs/IoT
1999 yes a b g n - - -


Ozmo Devices
2004: Founded (as H-Stream Wireless)
2009: First chip (OZMO1000 802.11bg Wi-Fi Direct SOC)
2012: Acquired by Atmel [2]
2009 no a b g - - - -


Newport Media
2005: Founded (as TV/RFIC tuner/SoC company)
2012: First Wi-Fi chip (NMC1000 802.11bgn)
2014: Acquired by Atmel
2012 no - b g n - - -


Broadcom
2002: First Wi-Fi chip (BCM4301 802.11b)
Currently offering USB/SDIO/PCIe/WiSoC chips
2002 yes a b g n ac ad ax


Cypress
2015 - Cypress Semiconductor merged with Spansion
2016 - Cypress to acquire Broadcom's wireless Internet of Things business
2016 yes - b g n ac - -


Blu Wireless
2009: Founded
2015: Demonstrated 802.11ad 60GHz chipset
2015 yes - - - - - ad -


Beken Corporation
2005: Founded (as Cordless transceiver/SoC company)
2016: First Wi-Fi chip (BK7231 802.11bgn IoT SoC)
2016 yes - b g n - - -


Celeno
2005: Founded
2009: "First" chip CL230 (rebranded Ralink chip)
Later WiFi chips using CEVA/RivieraWaves IP cores[3]
2009 yes a b g n ac - -


CEVA
2014 - Acquired RivieraWaves (802.11abgn+ac IP cores)
2014 yes a b g n ac - -


RivieraWaves
2014 - First Wi-Fi chipset (802.11abgn+ac) IP cores
2014 - Acquired by CEVA
2014 no a b g n ac - -


Espressif Systems
2008 - Founded
2010 - First Wi-Fi chip (offers IoT/LP WiSoCs)
2010 yes - b g n - - -


GainSpan
2006 - Founded
2008 - First Wi-Fi chip (GC1010 IoT 802.11b WiSoC)
using Wipro-NewLogic WLAN IP core
currently offers bgn IoT low power WiSoC
2008 yes - b g n - - -


Hitachi
2014 - Working on 802.11ad chip [4]
2014 yes - - - - - ad -


I&C Technology
2013 - Acquired XRONet (802.11bgn chip)
currently offering WF5000 (802.11bgn HT20-only SOC) [5] [6]
2013 yes - b g n - - -


XRONet
2005 - Founded (Wimax chipset)
2010 - Worked on Wi-Fi chipset in cooperation with
I&C Technology using Cosmic Circuits Wi-Fi IP
2013 - Acquired by I&C Technology
2010 no - b g n - - -


Imagination Technologies
2010: Acquired HelloSoft (Wi-Fi IP Cores)
2010 yes a b g n ac - -


HelloSoft
1999: Founded
2003: First Wi-Fi Core (802.11abg)[7]
2010: Acquired by Imagination Technologies
2003 no a b g - - - -


Intel
2002: First Wi-Fi chip (82531ME 802.11b)
2004: Acquired Envara (802.11abg chipset)
currently offers 802.11abgn/ac/ad PCIe adapters
2015: Acquired Lantiq (CPE and Wi-Fi chipsets)
2002 yes a b g n ac ad -


Envara
2000 - Founded
2003 - First Wi-Fi chip (EN202 802.11abg)
2004 - Acquired by Intel
2003 no a b g - - - -


Lantiq
2009 - Started as a spinoff from Infineon
2015 - Acquired by Intel
2009 no a b g n - - -


Metalink
1999 - Founded (as DSL SoC company)
2005 - First Wi-Fi chip (MtW8170 802.11n draft)
2010 - Acquired by Lantiq
2005 no a b g n - - -


Infineon
2002: Worked on unreleased 802.11abg chipset with Agere [8]
2004: Acquired ADMtek (802.11b/abg chips)
2007: Acquired CPE business (DSL + Wi-Fi chipsets) from Texas Instruments [9]
2009: Spinoff Wi-Fi assets to Lantiq [10]
2004 no a b g n - - -


ADMtek
2002 - First Wi-Fi chip (ADM8211 802.11b)
Worked on 802.11abg chipset
2004 - Acquired by Infineon
2002 no - b - - - - -


Lattice
2015 - Acquired Silicon Image (802.11ad chipset) [11]
2015 yes - - - - - ad -


Silicon Image
2011 - Acquired SiBEAM
(UltraGig/WirelessHD chipset, proprietary 60GHz protocol)
2015 - Acquired by Lattice
2011 no - - - - - ad -


SiBEAM [3] [4]
2004 - Founded
2008 - First UltraGig/WirelessHD chipset (proprietary 60GHz protocol) [12]
2011 - Acquired by Silicon Image, remained semi-independent?
2015 - Re-launched as SiBEAM Inc. (a Silicon Image subsidiary)
2015 - First 802.11ad (WiGig) chipset (SB6501 + SB6510) [13]
2015 - Acquired by Lattice
2008 no - - - - - ad -


Marvell
2002 - First Wi-Fi chip (Libertas 88W8300 802.11b)
currently offers a range of USB/SDIO/PCIe/WiSoC chips
2002 yes a b g n ac - -


Maxscend
Wi-Fi IoT, apparently using CEVA Wi-Fi IP [14]
(MXD2671 bgn, MXD2660 bgn)
yes - b g n - - -


MediaTek
2005 - Acquired Inprocomm (802.11bg chipsets)
2011 - Acquired Ralink (802.11abgn chipsets)
currently offers a wide range of USB/SDIO/PCIe/WiSoC chips
2005 yes a b g n ac - -


Ralink
2001 - Founded
2004 - First Wi-Fi chipset (RT2400 802.11b)
2011 - Acquired by MediaTek
2004 no a b g n - - -


Inprocomm
2002 - Founded
2003 - First Wi-Fi chip (IPN2101 802.11b)
2005 - Acquired by MediaTek
2003 no a b g - - - -


Microchip
2010: Acquired ZeroG Wireless (WiFi 802.11 chip)
2012: Acquired Roving Networks (WiFi chipset)
2012: Acquired SMSC (WiFi chipset)
Currently offers Wi-Fi chips for embedded applications
yes - b g - - - -


SMSC
2011: Acquired BridgeCo (DM870 802.11bg chip)
Relabeled DM870 WiSoC as "jukeblox" [5]
2012 Acquired by Microchip
2011 no - b g - - - -


BridgeCo
2000 Founded (ARM/Media processors)
2008 First chip with Wi-Fi MAC/BB (DM870 WiSoC)
with 802.11bg MAC/BB [6])
using Wipro-NewLogic WiLD Wi-Fi IP
2011 Acquired by SMSC [15]
2008 no - b g - - - -


Roving Networks
2010: Acquired G2 Microsystems (802.11bg chip)
2012: Acquired by Microchip [16]
2010 no - b g - - - -


G2 Microsystems
2004 Founded by a group from Radiata
(early Wi-Fi startup acquired by Cisco)
2006 First Wi-Fi chip (G2C501 802.11b WiSoC+RTLS/RFID)
2010 Acquired by Roving Networks [17]
2006 no - b g - - - -


ZeroG Wireless
2006: Founded
2009: First Wi-Fi chip (ZG2100 802.11b 2Mbps-only)
2010: Acquired by Microchip
2009 no - b - - - - -


Newracom
2014 First Wi-Fi chip (NRC8501 802.11abgn+ac)
IoT (NRC8101 WiFi below-1GHz)
2014 yes a b g n ac - -


Nitero
2011: Founded
2014: First Wi-Fi chip (NT4600 802.11ad 60GHz)
(manufactured with Samsung Foundries [18])
2014 yes - - - - - ad -


NufrontNufront on Wikipedia
Wi-Fi SoCs and chipsets for mobile (NCP6541, NL6621)
yes - b g n - - -


NXP
2006: Started as spin-off from Philips
currently offering 802.11abgn chips and more...
2006 yes a b g n - - -


Philips
2002: First Wi-Fi chip (offered 802.11b-only)
(MAC/BB partnership with Agere ?)
2003: Acquired Systemonic (802.11abg chipset)
2006: spin-off to NXP
2002 no a b g - - - -


Systemonic
1999: Founded
2001: First Wi-Fi chipset (HiperSonic 1: 802.11a + HiperLAN/2)
2003: Acquired by Philips [19]
2001 no a b g - - - -


Panasonic
2014: Working on 802.11ad (60GHz) chipset [20][21]
status TBD
- - - - - ad -


Peraso
2009: Founded
2012: First Wi-Fi chip (PRS1021 802.11ad 60GHz)
2012 yes - - - - - ad -


Qualcomm / Qualcomm Atheros
2006: Acquired Airgo (802.11abgn chipsets)
2011: Acquired/merged with Atheros into Qualcomm Atheros
2014: Acquired Wilocity (802.11ad chipset)
2014: Acquired CSR
Currently offers USB/SDIO/PCIe/WiSoC WiFi chips
2006 yes a b g n ac ad ax


Atheros
1998: Founded
2000: First Wi-Fi chipset (AR5000 802.11a only)
2006: Acquired ZyDAS
2011: Acquired by Qualcomm
2000 no a b g n - - -


ZyDAS
2000: Founded (as a subsidiary of ZyXEL)
2003: First Wi-Fi chipset (ZD1201 802.11b USB) [22]
2006: Acquired by Atheros
2003 no a b g - - - -


CSR
2008: First Wi-Fi chip (UF1050 802.11bg)
2012: Mobile Wi-Fi chips & IP was acquired by Samsung
2014: Remaining Auto/IoT Wi-Fi assets acquired by Qualcomm
2008 no a b g n - - -


Airgo Networks
2001: Founded
2003: First Wi-Fi chipset (AGN100 802abg+TrueMIMO)
2006: acquired by Qualcomm
2003 no a b g n - - -


Wilocity
2007: Founded
2011: First Wi-Fi chipset (Wil6100 802.11ad 60GHz)
2014: Acquired by Qualcomm
2011 no - - - - - ad -


Quantenna
2006: Founded
2008: First Wi-Fi chipset (QHS450 802.11n 4x4 MIMO)
currently offers 802.11n+ac 4x4 MIMO chipsets
2008 yes a b g n ac - ax


Radrix
First Wi-Fi chipset (802.11n+ac)
yes - - - n ac - -


Realtek
2003 First Wi-Fi chip (RTL8180L 802.11b MAC/BB only)
currently offers a wide range of USB/SDIO/PCIe/WiSoC chips
2003 yes a b g n ac - -


Redpine Signals
2001 Founded
2005 First Wi-Fi chipset (Pine1-LP 802.11bg)
currently offers a range of Wi-Fi chipsets
2005 yes a b g n - - -


Rockchip
2001 Founded
2015 First Wi-Fi chip (RKi6000 802.11b)
2015 yes - b - - - - -


SaberTek
First Wi-Fi chipset (802.11abgn+ac)
2014 yes - - - n ac - -


Samsung
2012: Acquired Nanoradio (802.11abgn chips)
2012: Acquired CSR mobile Wi-Fi IP
Currently offering 802.11bgn WiSoC
2012 yes - b g n - - -


Nanoradio
2004: Founded
2006: First Wi-Fi chipset (NRX700 802.11bg)
2012: Acquired by Samsung
2006 no a b g n - - -


SmartChip Integration (SCI)
2012: Founded
2012 yes a b g - - - -


STMicroelectronics (STMicro)
2003: Acquired Synad (802.11ab chipset) [23]
2009: Spin-off Wi-Fi assets to ST-Ericsson
2013: Merged back ST-Ericsson assets into STMicro...
currently offering IoT CW1100/CW1200 WiFi chips
2003 yes a b g n ac - -


Synad
2000 Founded
2002 First Wi-Fi chipset (SY8000 802.11ab) [24]
2003 Acquired by STMicro
2002 no a b - - - - -


TeleChips
2013 First Wi-Fi chipset (TCC3700 802.11abgn SOC)
2013 yes a b g n - - -


TensorcomTensorcom Inc.
2006 Founded
2014 First Wi-Fi chip (TC2522-Y 802.11ad 60GHz)
2014 yes - - - - - ad -


Texas Instruments
2000: Acquired Alantro (802.11b chipset)
2003: Acquired Radia Communications (802.11 RFIC)
2007: Sold CPE business (DSL + some Wi-Fi chipsets) to Infineon [9]
currently offering IoT and mobile WiSOCs
2000 yes a b g n - - -


Alantro Communications
1997: Founded
2000: First Wi-Fi chip (ACX100 802.11b baseband chip)[25]
2000: Acquired by Texas Instruments
2000 no - b - - - - -


Radia Communications
2000: Founded
Worked on 802.11 RFIC chip
2003: Acquired by Texas Instruments [26]
no - - - - - - -


RDA Microelectronics
2014: Ownership transferred to w:Tsinghua Holdings [27]
Currently offering 802.11bgn chips
2012 yes - b g n - - -


Spreadtrum CommunicationsSpreadtrum on Wikipedia
2013: Ownership transferred to w:Tsinghua Holdings [28]
Currently offering mobile/tablet SoCs w/ embedded Wi-Fi
2012 yes a b g n - - -


Toshiba
2009: First Wi-Fi chipset (TC90515XBG 802.11bgn)
Currently offering 802.11abgn+ac SOC chips
May be working on 802.11ad chip [29]
2009 yes a b g n ac - -


u-bloxsite
2014 Acquired Antcor (Wi-Fi IP)
2014 yes - - - - ac - -


Antcor
802.11ac implementation on reprogrammable DSP
802.11ah implementation (below 1GHz Wi-Fi)
no - - - - ac - -


Winner Micro
2014: Founded
Currently offering IoT/WiSOC 802.11bgn chips
(W500, W510C1 etc)
2014 yes - b g n - - -


Wipro aka Wipro-NewLogic
2005: Acquired NewLogic (802.11abg IP cores)
Currently offering Wi-Fi IP cores (TSMC 90nm)
2005 yes a b g - - - -


NewLogic
1997: Founded
2002: First Wi-Fi core (802.11ab)
802.11abg WiLD WiFi IP Cores
2005: Acquired by Wipro
2002 no a b g - - - -


Inactive[edit]

  • 3DSP [7] - Founded in 1997; first Wi-Fi 802.11bg IP core in 2002[30]; collaborated with Syntek since 1999; no activity after 2009
  • ALi / Acer Labs / Acer Laboratories Incorporated / ALinx (ALi WLAN Chip Business spinoff in 2002): (2000-2003) First chip M4301A (802.11b) [31] [32]
  • Agere Systems - spin off from Lucent in 2002; continued development on WaveLAN chipsets w/ Infineon assistance; quit Wi-Fi chipset business in late 2004
  • AMD - First Wi-Fi chipset 1997 (Am79C930 pre-802.11 DSSS); released an unpopular Alchemy-based 802.11b chipset (Am1770/1/2 802.11b); exited the Wi-Fi chipset business in ~2004
  • Beam Networks [8] - Founded in 2006; worked on 802.11ad 60GHz chipset; activity ceased in 2012
  • ComSilica [9] - worked on 802.11a chip. Failed.
  • Cirrus Logic - Acquired ShareWave in 2001, Bodega chipset (Whitecap2 + 802.11b), near zero adoption
    • ShareWave Founded in 1996; First chip in 1998 (SWS260A MAC, 4Mbps DSSS non-802.11); acquired by Cirrus in 2001[33]
  • Cisco Started Wi-Fi chipset activity by acquiring Aironet in 1999 (802.11b chipset); stopped offering/using own Wi-Fi silicon ~2001; formally got out the Wi-Fi chip business in January 2004[34]. The product name Aironet remained, but using 3rd-party chipsets.
  • Conexant (2003-...)
  • EdgeWater [10] - multichannel 802.11 chipset [11] still active?
  • IceFyre [13] - 802.11abg chipset[40]
  • Integrated System Solution Corp. (ISSC) (...) presumably acquired Winbond's WLAN assets, seems to be defunct
    • Winbond (...) released a number of ultimately unpopular chipsets (W89C3x)
  • Mobilian [14] - founded in 1999; 802.11b chipset [41]
  • National Semiconductor - worked on wireless LAN since at least 1994 (AirShare 900MHz etc); worked on Wi-Fi chip (not released); acquired innoCOMM (802.11a chipset) in 2001[42]; acquired Wireless Solutions Sweden a subsidiary of Allgon in 2001 (Wi-Fi/wireless products). No Wi-Fi chips were ever released...
  • OKI - 2000 - had a 802.11 legacy (FHSS) MAC/BB chip M7730B, used in SOHOware_CableFREE_NetBlaster_(NCF600) and InstantWave PC Card IOU0610S11
  • Proxim - first RangeLAN product in 1991, had 802.11 FHSS / HomeRF / HomeRF 2.0 products
  • Renesas - Acquired KeyStream in 2009 (802.11abg chipsets)
  • RDC - first WiSoC in 2004 (R2600 b/g); also responsible for AMRISC WiSoCs designed/manufactured for AMIT
  • Rivermark Technology - spin off from RFMD in 2005 for the purpose of licensing the Wi-Fi IP[45]
    • RF Micro Devices (RFMD)- Started Wi-Fi chipset activity by acquiring Resonext in 2002; first Wi-Fi chipset in 2003 (RFCS5420 802.11abg); cease Wi-Fi activity in 2005
  • Silicon Integrated Systems (SiS) (-2005) 16x series chipsets, low adoption for most (excepting the 163U)
  • Symbol Technologies - Offered WiFi products since 1990 (SpectrumOne 900MHz, Spectrum24), later has some 802.11b baseband chips; quit the Wi-Fi chipset business in 2001
  • Syntek - Founded in 1983; First and only Wi-Fi chipset (STK9100 802.11bg) in 2008 (with 3DSP [15]); company appears defunct.
  • Telewise Communications [16] - 2000-2003 worked on 802.11abg chips. failed.
  • VIA (~2004-2006)
  • WavePlus - Acquired Topdek semiconductor (802.11b chipset) in 2003, quit the Wi-Fi business in 2005

TODO[edit]

  • WiFi IP: Silvus Communication Systems 2004 silvuscom.com / Silvus Technologies silvustechnologies.com [46]
  • Comsis 802.11n core
  • nordic semi wlan core
  • chipidea microelectronics wlan core
  • wlan core: t-2-m.com
  • wlan core: Posedge
  • wlan core: www.asix.com.tw
  • wlan core: www.ittiam.com
  • wlan core? http://uurmi.com/property/11ac.html
  • Global Unichip: 802.11ad AFE (just AFE, not full wlan core) [47]
  • Imec: 802.11ad RFIC transceiver (just RFIC, not MAC/Baseband) [48]

References[edit]

  1. Atmel Homes In On WLAN Market Through 802.11 MAC Release
  2. on Businessweek
  3. RivieraWaves Announces its Wi-Fi Partnership with Celeno
  4. Hitachi, Panasonic and Toshiba to deliver 60GHz wireless products in 2H 2010
  5. WF5000 Product Brief
  6. WF5000 WiFi certification
  7. HelloSoft Introduces Industry's First Fully Customizable Wireless LAN IP Solution
  8. Agere joins with Infineon to make Wi-Fi chips (802.11abg chipset, code named WARP, never released)
  9. 9.0 9.1 Infineon Acquires Texas Instruments’ DSL CPE Business
  10. the sale of Infineon's WLC division formed Lantiq and presumably included ADMtek assets (incl. WildCard (ADM8262) WFA and WildPass (ADM8668) WFA)
  11. Lattice acquires 60GHz pioneer Silicon Image
  12. SiBEAM Announces Availability of World's First WirelessHD Chipset Solutions at 2008 International Consumer Electronic Show (CES)
  13. SIBEAM EXPANDS GIGABIT WIRELESS PORTFOLIO WITH NEW WIGIG 802.11ad SOLUTION
  14. Maxscend Partners with CEVA to Offer Complete Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Solutions for Mobile Platforms, Wearables and IoT Devices
  15. Standard MicroSystems Acquired BridgeCo
  16. Microchip Technology acquires Roving Networks
  17. Roving Networks Acquires G2 Microsystems Wi-Fi Technology Company to Manufacture and Sell the G2547/G2543, Ultra-Low Power 802.11 b/g SOCs and Modules
  18. Nitero, Samsung Foundries deliver first Wi-Gig mobile chipset samples
  19. Philips Buys Wi-Fi Chipmaker Systemonic
  20. Panasonic Develops Less Than 1-Watt WiGig Chipset
  21. A low power 60GHz CMOS transceiver for WiGig/IEEE 802.11ad, current status and future perspectives
  22. News inner on cens.com
  23. STMicro enters Wi-Fi space with Synad acquisition
  24. SYNAD AND UMC COLLABORATION DELIVERS MERCURY SY8000 CHIPSET: SETS INDUSTRY STANDARD FOR DUAL BAND WIRELESS LAN (WLAN)
  25. TI Extends Wireless LAN Coverage Area by 70 Percent with New IEEE 802.11b Chip
  26. Texas Instruments Acquires Radia Communications, an Expert in 802.11 RF
  27. Tsinghua Unigroup Closes US$907 Million Acquisition of RDA Microelectronics
  28. Tsinghua Unigroup Completes Acquisition of Spreadtrum
  29. Hitachi, Panasonic and Toshiba to deliver 60GHz wireless products in 2H 2010
  30. 3DSP LAUNCHES MULTI-PROTOCOL WIRELESS LAN DESIGN BASED ON ITS POWERFUL UNIPHY DSP CORE
  31. Competition Heats Up for 802.11g Chip Market
  32. ALi completes spin-off of ALinx Technology
  33. acq. by Cirrus in 2001
  34. Cisco pulls plug on Radiata
  35. Cisco Systems to Acquire Radiata, Inc.; Pioneering High Performance Wireless Networks
  36. Intersil acquires No Wires Needed B.V.
  37. Harris Corporation aqcuires CHOICE Microsystems
  38. Digital Ocean -> CHOICE Microsystems
  39. Engim touts test results for its WLAN chips
  40. IceFyre to Demonstrate Industry's Only Cost-Effective Multimedia WLAN Systems at CONNECTIONS
  41. Mobilian chip set supports 802.11b, Bluetooth operation
  42. National Semiconductor to Acquire innoCOMM, A Leading Developer of Wireless Chipset Solutions
  43. InnoCOMM Wireless Targets First Production Ready 5GHz Wireless Network Solution
  44. Key Stream Wireless LAN Business to be Transferred to Renesas
  45. rivermarktech
  46. [1]
  47. Global Unichip utilizes Cadence analog IP to implement WiGig-enabled SoC on 28nm process
  48. [2]