WASHINGTON The Chinese subsidiary of Spreadtrum Communications Inc. is being credited with developing the country's first 3G mobile phone chip, according to Chinese media reports.
According to the official Xinhau news agency and China Radio International, the Shanghai branch of Spreadtrum, which is based in Sunnyvale, Calif., recently developed China's first indigenous 3G chip. No details were reported. Spreadtrum develops wireless IC software products.
The announcement of the so-called "China chip" was made by a senior official of the China's Ministry of Information Industry.
The reports added that several unidentified Chinese mobile phone manufacturers have signed agreements to use the new 3G chip.
The announcement could boost efforts to launch China's own 3G mobile phone standard. Beijing is reportedly targeting mid-2005 as the launch date for its standard, which is based on its TD-SCDMA technology. The standard would compete against the U.S. CDMA2000 spec backed by Qualcomm Inc. and Europe's wideband CDMA standard supported by Ericsson, Nokia and others.