Five years ago: Intel, Xircom deal to shape mobile computing future

Xircom's 32-bit PCMCIA CardBus technology will help put notebooks on a par with desktop systems

Intel and PC Card specialist Xircom today said their three year OEM and technology agreement will be key in bringing notebooks up to desktop standards. Intel last week acquired a significant stake in the mobile solutions company.

"Mobile solutions still have a delay of up to four months on desktops," said Benny Van Calster, product marketing manager Xircom Europe. "The agreement will help notebooks get to market at the same time as desktops. Intel's the one big player in desktops. Xircom's the leader in mobile computing."

Xircom's next generation 32-bit PCMCIA CardBus technology will help put mobiles on a par with desktops, said Van Calster: "Intel will bring our CardBus technology out to OEMs under their branding, and we might OEM for Intel and put their technology into a mobile."

He added Xircom will benefit from the chip giant's input, but remain autonomous: "Intel will provide technology, trends and marketing control, but not R+D."

"We don't have a seat on [Xircom's] board, so we won't be telling them what to do," agreed an Intel spokeswoman." She added: "We've had our own networking division for some time, and our Fast Ethernet LAN adapter, and this [acquisition] will complement it." The spokeswoman said the deal will have implications for Intel's future mobile processor designs, but it was still early days.

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