The investments, from Intel Capital's US$200 million Digital Home Fund, will go to five software and hardware firms: CableMatrix, Mediabolic, Pure Networks, BridgeCo and Envivio. Intel didn't give specific financial details.
Zurich, Switzerland-based BridgeCo designs chips and software for wirelessly connecting PCs to consumer electronics devices. CableMatrix is based in Atlanta and Jerusalem and is working on an "on-demand service platform" for multimedia content over broadband. Envivio, in South San Francisco, Calif., is working on software compression solutions. Mediabolic, operating out of San Francisco, provides an embedded software platform for consumer electronics products and computers, Intel said. And Pure Networks, of Seattle, is engaged in making software and services for digital homes.
"Barriers such as interoperability and ease of use must be overcome to accelerate digital home technology adoption," said a statement from Scott Darling, Intel Capital vice president and director of Enterprise and Digital Home Sectors. "We're investing in these five companies to help solve these technical issues, making it simpler and more enjoyable for people to connect their consumer electronics and computing devices and share content around their homes."
Intel is already working with hardware, software, content and service companies under its digital home project, which aims to develop a wireless home network, bringing the PC and consumer electronics gizmos together. In April, the company announced investments in four companies.