Intel pumps up Wi-Fi investments

Intel will increase its investment in wireless networking technology Wednesday when it is expected to announce a minority stake in two companies developing Wi-Fi products.

The chipmaker's Communications Fund is throwing in with network access company STSN and IP telephony software developer TeleSym. Intel first invested STSN in 1999. The companies would not disclose the terms or the amounts of the financing.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based chipmaker, along with others such as AT&T and IBM, is also partially funding start-up Cometa Networks, which is working to deploy a nationwide network of public hot spots to give subscribers access to the Internet from just about anywhere.

"These investments accelerate our business strategy and it's always a good thing when our equity strategy promotes our business strategy," said John Hull, a director of the Intel Communications Fund.

The computer industry has latched onto Wi-Fi in hopes of renewing consumer interest. The technology is gradually infiltrating everything from PCs to DVD players leading industry analysts to forecast significant growth in the coming years as consumers complement their high-speed broadband access with wireless networks and connect their devices to those networks.

News source: CNet News - Intel pumps up Wi-Fi investments

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