MANHASSET, N.Y. Ultrawideband signaling specialist Pulselink Inc. has raised $30 million in Series D funding a day after joining both the Multiband-OFDM Alliance and the UWB Forum. The funds will go toward development and commercialization of the company's software-defined cognitive radio UWB design for wireless LANs, cable TV networks and electric power lines.
Unlike many other commercial developers of UWB technology who are targeting short-range, high-rate wireless applications, Pulselink (Carlsbad, Calif.) is media- independent and was the first to demonstrate UWB signaling over cable lines in June 2002.
More recently, the company has attracted attention for its work on UWB for wireless LANs. That work led to its taking the lead in developing a common signaling protocol that allows multiple UWB implementations, both standard and non-standard, to communicate and coexist. That protocol was since modified and renamed the Common Signaling Mode (CSM).
Motorola Inc. rolled CSM into its proposal for a high-rate UWB interface currently being debated by the IEEE 802.15.3a task group. That group has been deadlocked since September. The opposing camp, the Multiband-OFDM Alliance led by Intel, Texas Instruments, Staccato Communications, STMicroelectronics and Sony controls the majority of votes within the group, but has yet to receive the requisite 75 percent.
PulseLink joined MBOA Monday (April 26). "They recognized that the market is developing around the MBOA's technology," said Jason Ellis, senior manager of business development and marketing Staccato Communications Inc. (San Diego, Calif.).
At the same time, Pulselink also joined the UWB Forum, whose members include backers of the direct-sequence UWB. "Basically, we joined both the MBOA and the UWB Forum at the same time," said a Pulselink spokesperson. "We're not showing preference to one or the other but view both as differing systems we can potentially support."
PulseLink's initial target market is home networking of consumer electronics devices and appliances. The company expects to receive its first test silicon in early May, with commercial availability by mid-2005. Pulselink will conduct prototype demonstrations of its technology at the International Telecommunications Union's Global Conference on Ultra Wideband scheduled in Boston from June 9-14.
The funding round was led by Mobile Telecommunications Co., National Investment Co. and Jamson Holdings along with six public companies.