Qualcomm grounds Wingcast venture

Wingcast, the two-year-old telematics venture between Qualcomm and Ford Motor, closed its doors Monday and about 150 employees lost their jobs, said Qualcomm Treasurer Richard Grannis. Wingcast was created in October 2000. It sold equipment that let drivers do things like operate phones or car stereos using their voices, or automatically notify police and hospitals when an airbag deployed. The company was based in San Diego. Qualcomm invested $25 million in Wingcast, owning 15 percent, Grannis said. Ford Motor did not return a call for comment Monday. It owned 85 percent of Wingcast, and was its sole source of funding since May 2001. Ford has never divulged how much it invested. Grannis said Ford and Nissan Motor still intend to use Wingcast equipment in some lines of cars this fall. --Ben Charny, Special to ZDNet News

Wingcast, the two-year-old telematics venture between Qualcomm and Ford Motor, closed its doors Monday and about 150 employees lost their jobs, said Qualcomm Treasurer Richard Grannis.

Wingcast was created in October 2000. It sold equipment that let drivers do things like operate phones or car stereos using their voices, or automatically notify police and hospitals when an airbag deployed. The company was based in San Diego.

Qualcomm invested $25 million in Wingcast, owning 15 percent, Grannis said.

Ford Motor did not return a call for comment Monday. It owned 85 percent of Wingcast, and was its sole source of funding since May 2001. Ford has never divulged how much it invested.

Grannis said Ford and Nissan Motor still intend to use Wingcast equipment in some lines of cars this fall. --Ben Charny, Special to ZDNet News