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Celeno goes public on Deutsche deal

By PETER WHITE

Published: 8 December, 2011

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Celeno surprised everyone a year ago when it landed a deal with a Chinese company that would put its WiFi chips, which it claims can send multiple HD video signals around a home, into devices which drove China Telecom's IPTV service.

It soon boasted involvement in the UPC Horizon box and a handful of smaller deals including one with Israel's leading satellite TV provider Yes, and with Sweden's Inteno to power its ZAP100 Wi-Fi video bridge. Then it went quiet as US rival Quantenna took over - announcing deals with Motorola, Netgear, Turkey's AirTies and an investment deal with Telefonica.

Now Celeno is on another charge going public with a deal to include its chips in a video bridge for Deutsche Telekom's T-Entertain IPTV service and Australia's iiNet, where it will act as the home network for a Fetch TV DVR.

The Celeno chip is a pure 3 x 3 MIMO chip which has 6 antennas, but just 3 radios. The radios can switch to any of the 6 antennas, which it claims gives the same or better performance as the Quantenna chips. Since the maximum number of open channels is 3 its maximum PHY throughput for each one being 150 Mbps, the company talks about it having 450 Mbps capability. Quantenna talks about 600 Mbps for its 4 x 4 chip. Both chips hop around the 5 Ghz unlicensed spectrum looking for the cleanest channels and Celeno claims to have optimized its firmware to be video aware.

In November Quantenna was the first to adapt its MIMO technology to the 802.11ac standard announcing the first ac chip. 802.11ac is expected to slowly become the bulk WiFi chip over the next few years as it replaces 802.11n.

At AT&T a deal for HD video delivery over WiFi has gone to Cisco, using Broadcom chips, but the spec is awful using 2 x 2 MIMO and the company will almost certainly have to rethink at some point.

While these two video specialists hate the sound of each other's respective names and vie for attention in this specialist market, the complete absence of Broadcom and Qualcomm Atheros is perhaps the most significant omission, in an operator driven market where many of the top design wins have already been claimed.

Celeno said that Deutsche Telekom has selected Celeno's CL1820 Wi-Fi chip and to power its Speedport W 102 Bridge which will enable Deutsche Telekom customers to distribute its "Entertain" IPTV service throughout the home in Germany.

If the German launch goes well, Deutsche Telekom could also move this device to its pay TV operations in Croatia, Greece, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia, which in total with Germany givers it 3.4 million pay TV subscribers. In Germany it has just 1.4 million of those subscribers.

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