Wireless could come to more Arduino boards with Atmel buy

Chip maker Atmel agrees to buy Newport Media and its wireless technologies for $140 million.

In a move that could bring faster wireless capabilities to gadgets and Arduino boards, chip maker Atmel is buying wireless chip maker Newport Media for US$140 million.

Atmel's chips are widely used in small electronics, do-it-yourself kits and Arduino boards. The company's strong spot has been its low-power microcontrollers, but Newport Media's Wi-Fi 802.11n and Bluetooth technologies could bring faster wireless communication capabilities to products like wearables and robots.

Arduino boards are largely based on Atmel's MCUs, but mostly don't have wireless due to their size and cost constraints. With devices becoming more connected, Atmel will be able to package wireless on electronics or developer boards used to prototype wearable devices and robots.

In May, Atmel and Arduino showed off a new development board called Zero to build electronics and wearable devices. Last month, Atmel launched a set of ARM-based microcontrollers with sensors and Wi-Fi connectivity.

The acquisition comes as Atmel goes deeper into the Internet of Things market, with a number of sensor devices already using its microcontrollers. Atmel supports ZigBee, and will now own Bluetooth technology.

Atmel MCUs and Newport Media's wireless chipsets could be combined in industrial, home and building automation, the company said in a statement. Refrigerators and other home appliances also use Atmel's MCUs.

The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter this year.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issuesArduinoAtmelComponentsprocessorsMergers 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.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

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.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?