Wi-Fi Mobile Phones a Step Closer
By Carlo Longino, Tue Sep 09 15:45:00 GMT 2003

The main obstacle to adding 802.11 connectivity to mobile phones has been the onerous power demands of Wi-Fi chips. But now Philips and Broadcom may have overcome that.

The two semiconductor manufacturers have independently announced new 802.11b processor products that aim to cut down not just on power requirements, but physical size as well, making them ideal for mobile devices.

Broadcom's is an all-in-one solution, a postage stamp-sized chip that incorporates all the necessary elements. The company says it draws 97% less power in standby mode than an Intel Centrino chip, while Philips says its new product uses even less.

It's no secret that Wi-Fi sucks the life out of mobile devices like PDAs pretty quickly; it looks likely that these developments will pave the way for the proliferation of connected mobile devices and even consumer electronics.