NXP opens wallet to build wearables with better battery life

The company has acquired Bluetooth Low Energy technology

To help it improve the battery life of next-generation smartwatches and fitness bands, NXP Semiconductors has acquired part of U.S. chip maker Quintic.

Most existing wearables suffer from bad battery life, so any improvement in that regard would be a step in the right direction. NXP has bought assets and intellectual property related to Quintic's BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) business. BLE is used by wearables and "Internet of things" type sensors to communicate.

With the acquisition, NXP can integrate Quintic's Low Energy technology with its own microcontrollers, for example, to cut costs and improve energy efficiency. That would make NXP's chipsets more attractive to manufacturers, who theoretically could use them to build cheaper smartwatches and other wearables with better battery life.

Financial details of the deal were not announced.

The growing battle over the opportunity to power upcoming wearables should help speed up product improvements. At the recent Electronica conference in Germany, a number of vendors demonstrated components that they were working on, and improved energy efficiency was the common theme.

Battery life will have an effect on the popularity of wearables and the development of the so-called Internet of things -- appliances and objects that are connected to the Internet via sensors. That's because many of the devices run on batteries, and battery life will determine how affordable and practical it will be to deploy them, Matt Hatton, director at Machina Research, said in a recent interview.

The Quintic wearable team consists of approximately 65 engineers located in Beijing, Shenzhen and Shanghai in China and in Sunnyvale, California. The engineers along with executives are expected to join NXP when the transaction closes during the first three months of next year.

Intellectual property assets, including more than 60 U.S. and Chinese patents, also form part of the transaction, according to NXP.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issuesQuinticComponentsESMNXP SemiconductorsMergers and acquisitions

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?