Short range wireless and mesh network have a lot of potential in home automation and smart home product. I believe NXP move is a good move towards preparing solution to the new market.The question comes down to how mature the Zigbee protocol definition is. If Zigbee can't be multi-vendors compliance, the chance of success is low. I would love to hear some insiders' comment on where the status of Zigbee protocol development is.
This acquisition makes sense for NXP; over the last couple of years they've been narrowing their focus to high performance, low power analog and mixed-signal ICs and been shedding everything else. In 2009, they transferred their Sytem-on-chip IP and resources to partner Virage Logic, and more recently in 2010 sold their set-top business lines to Trident.
I'm not as sure for Jennic especially at such a low initial price of $12.2 million. My guess would be that Jennic's market segments of Metering, Telehealthcare, Remote control, RFID, etc. were taking longer than they anticipated to take off, because these industries are subject to multiple industry regulations, and require a critical mass of ecosystem partners. And the global slowdowns of the last couple of years probably didn't help either.
At the same time, the burn-rate for Jennic was probably high, with having to support multiple wireless microcontroller designs (along with the associated CPU, RF, power management design angineering),
different protocol stacks, and hardware reference designs. So the buyout offer from NXP was probably hard to resist.
Drones are, in essence, flying autonomous vehicles. Pros and cons surrounding drones today might well foreshadow the debate over the development of self-driving cars. In the context of a strongly regulated aviation industry, "self-flying" drones pose a fresh challenge. How safe is it to fly drones in different environments? Should drones be required for visual line of sight – as are piloted airplanes? Join EE Times' Junko Yoshida as she moderates a panel of drone experts.