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  • Mar. 2, 2015, 1:41 PM
    • The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX +2.4%) has rallied to new highs after NXP announced it's buying microcontroller, network processor, and RF amplifier supplier Freescale for $16.7B after factoring net cash/debt, the biggest deal yet in the chip industry's ongoing consolidation wave. The Nasdaq is up 0.5%.
    • Microcontroller makers are among today's big gainers - NXP/Freescale assert they'll be the world's biggest supplier of general-purpose microcontrollers. Standouts include Atmel (ATML +6%) and STMicroelectronics (STM +3.4%), as well as Cypress (CY +3.1%) and merger partner Spansion (CODE +3.2%).
    • Other notable gainers include InvenSense (INVN +3.4%), Ambarella (AMBA +6.3%), Audience (ADNC +5.5%), Cirrus Logic (CRUS +3.7%), Cavium (CAVM +4.2%), ON Semi (ONNN +3.5%), Silicon Motion (SIMO +3.5%), InPhi (IPHI +3.8%), and TowerJazz (TSEM +5.5%).
    • With the Mobile World Congress as a backdrop, InvenSense has unveiled a 6-axis SoC that pairs a gyroscope and acceleromoter with a motion processor and related software/algorithms; the company claims 25%-50% better power consumption than rival solutions. It has also launched a software library meant to "provide sensor-assisted positioning in places where GNSS alone cannot provide desired accuracy."
    • Cavium has announced its OCTEON Fusion-M processor line for mobile base stations. The chips support up to 16 custom CPU cores running at 2GHz., and are declared by Cavium to enable "Smart Radio Heads" that can adapt to network conditions. They begin sampling in Q3.
    • Previously: Chip product launches: ARMH, EZCH, BRCM, NXPI, XLNX, IDTI
    | Mar. 2, 2015, 1:41 PM | 3 Comments
  • Dec. 11, 2014, 2:47 PM
    • RANSquawk reports hearing an "unconfirmed" rumor that Broadcom is in talks to buy InvenSense (INVN +6.4%)
    • Speculation that InvenSense could become an M&A target for a larger chipmaker with mobile exposure has occasionally emerged - Intel and Qualcomm have been among the names mentioned.
    • Earlier: InvenSense gains following upbeat Roth comments
    | Dec. 11, 2014, 2:47 PM | 6 Comments
  • Jul. 7, 2014, 5:52 PM
    • InvenSense (INVN) is buying Movea, a French provider of algorithms and software for processing/analyzing motion and audio sensor data, and Trusted Positioning (TPI), a developer of software that improves location tracking by combining data from motion sensors and GPS/Wi-Fi networks. The company is paying a total of $81M ($75M in cash).
    • InvenSense declares pairing its motion sensors with Movea and TPI's technology will allow it to offer "intelligent" sensor SoCs supporting always-on location and activity tracking for mobile apps/services.
    • Movea has an IP portfolio featuring 100+ patent families, and calls itself "amongst the leading patent holders for motion sensor based functions." It offers motion-processing/data fusion libraries aimed at mobile devices, sports wearables, and living room gear. TPI, meanwhile, argues its software allows for positioning to work in areas where wireless signals are blocked.
    • Two weeks ago, voice processor vendor Audience (ADNC) announced it's buying Movea rival Sensor Platforms. The deals have implications for QuickLogic (QUIK), whose sensor hubs have relied on Sensor Platforms' algorithms and have some feature overlap with InvenSense's motion sensors.
    • SA authors have gone back and forth regarding the competitive threat posed by InvenSense to QuickLogic, with bulls having argued InvenSense is only a threat on the low-end. The Movea/TPI deals arguably strengthen InvenSense's challenge.
    • Last fall, InvenSense bought Analog Devices' microphone unit for $100M+.
    | Jul. 7, 2014, 5:52 PM | 6 Comments
  • Oct. 14, 2013, 4:30 PM
    • InvenSense (INVN) is acquiring Analog Devices' (ADI) analog/digital microphone ops for $100M in cash +  potential revenue milestone payments (payable over 12 months). The business is expected to account for less than 1% of ADI's FQ4 (ends Nov. 2) revenue. (PR)
    • There should be R&D synergies between the ADI unit and InvenSense's motion sensor ops, given both rely on MEMS technology. In addition, InvenSense will be able to cross-sell ADI's microphones to mobile/consumer electronics OEMs using its motion sensors, and vice versa.
    | Oct. 14, 2013, 4:30 PM | 7 Comments