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Qualcomm Buys Summit Micro For Better Battery Life

On Monday Qualcomm Incorporated said that it had acquired Sunnyvale, CA.-based Summit Microelectronics (Summit), a leading developer and provider of programmable power integrated circuits, for an undisclosed amount. Qualcomm said its power management roadmap will be significantly enhanced with the addition of Summit's expertise and products.

"Summit Microelectronics brings key expertise, technology, products, and design wins in battery charging and DC-DC converters," said Steve Mollenkopf, president and COO of Qualcomm. "This acquisition enhances the competitiveness of Qualcomm's chipset solutions and enables us to provide our customers with industry leading power management and charging performance."

The news arrives as the industry continues to pack more features into smartphones at an accelerated rate while also struggling to maintain optimal battery performance. Unfortunately, the increasing complexity of advanced modem technology, faster multi-core processors and large high-resolution screens has made smartphones more of a power hog than previous generations. Battery technologies simply haven't been able to keep up.

"The demand for more sophisticated battery management is critical in a world of increasingly smart devices with advanced computing capabilities, large high-resolution screens, and advanced modem technologies (e.g. 4G LTE)," the company said.

Summit Microelectronics is a leader in providing flexible, highly integrated power management solutions combining precision power regulation with sophisticated digital control in a single chip. In particular, the company's fast charging solutions are found in a variety of leading mobile phones, tablets, and e-readers, Qualcomm said.

As a result of the acquisition, Qualcomm will be able to offer "a robust portfolio which will address a broader set of customers and complex design challenges." All employees of Summit Microelectronics have joined Qualcomm's CDMA Technologies division, the company said.