Intel pumps more cash into WiMax

Santa Clara, CA – Despite announcing last week that it is to cease production of its Rosedale 2 WiMax chip, Intel is investing $43 million in Japanese WiMax provider UQ Communications.

UQ Communications will use the funding to continue the nationwide expansion of its WiMax service in Japan, making a commitment to cover 90 percent of the country by 2012. The company recently launched a trial service in Tokyo’s 23 wards, Yokohama and Kawasaki, and the Tokyo International Airport. It will formally launch the service on July 1.

“Intel Capital’s investment in UQ Communications is one of our most significant commitments in developing the WiMax ecosystem around the globe,” said Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital and Intel executive vice president. “UQ’s WiMax deployment in Japan is a spectacular example of technology innovation being put to work.”

Intel has been one of the world’s largest evangelists of WiMax, making a series of capital investments worldwide to promote the technology. However, on Friday, the company unexpectedly announced that it is to halt production of its Rosedale 2 WiMax chip, citing the global economic slowdown. However, it has assured users that it is not giving up on WiMax, and will focus on more recent chips instead.