Cisco to buy SON software vendor Intucell for $475 million

Intucell's software can decrease the number of dropped calls and lessen congestion, it said

Cisco Systems is planning to acquire Intucell in a bid to make its products more attractive to mobile operators as traffic volume on networks continues to grow.

Cisco said Wednesday it will pay approximately US$475 million in cash and retention-based incentives to acquire the entire business and operations of Intucell.

Headquartered in Ra'anana, Israel, Intucell provides advanced self-optimizing network (SON) software, which enables mobile carriers to plan, configure, manage, optimize and repair cellular networks automatically, Cisco said in a statement.

Intucell's software can detect coverage, overload and other issues in real time and automatically adjust the network to respond, according to the company's website. For example, when too many users are connected to one base station, the system automatically adjusts coverage by getting assistance from nearby towers, the company said.

For users, that means fewer dropped calls, better network coverage and less congestion, according to Intucell. For operators, it is another tool as they face a growing volume of data, according to Cisco.

In addition to Intucell's technological prowess, Cisco also highlighted the fact that the company's software works with hardware from multiple vendors.

When the acquisition closes, Intucell employees will join Cisco's Service Provider Mobility Group.

The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of Cisco's fiscal year 2013, and is subject to the usual closing conditions, including applicable regulatory approvals.

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