February 28, 2013
By Gagandeep Kaur
Being an LTE-focused chip player, Altair sees growth coming on the back of rollouts by Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel Ltd. (Mumbai: BHARTIARTL)
“Our biggest focus in India is targeted towards Reliance Jio and Airtel and we are investing heavily in it,” Eran Eshed, Co-founder and Vice-President of Marketing at Altair Semiconductor told Light Reading India at Mobile World Congress 2013.
The company is gearing up to meet different and unique requirements of the Indian companies, especially Reliance. Besides plans to get into voice, Reliance is also betting big on the broadcast, which increases the challenge for companies like Altair that are aiming to get business from the telco. The Evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service (EMBMS) is a 3GPP standard that enables mobile networks to offer broadcast services dynamically.
“It is a standard feature within 3GPP LTE but Reliance Infotel seems to be pushing that much sooner than others. It is a very engineering-intense feature,” elaborates Eshed. It might be recalled that Reliance had expanded its footprint in the media sector with an investment in the TV18 Group. According to the agreement, Reliance was due to get preferential access to content from TV18, which could be then distributed through its 4G network.
Meanwhile, Altair has started business with Airtel, which had launched 4G service in India last year. “I think you would start seeing Altair based fixed devices on the Airtel network soon,” says Eshed.
Altair faces stiff competition from Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) and Sequans Communications . “We believe we can deliver the combination of features, performances and cost that they are looking for. Being a small company is actually an advantage because we are flexible and agile and thus more likely to be able to meet their requirement,” says Eshed.
While as of now Eastern Europe and Latin America contribute the maximum revenue to Altair, Eshed believes that by the next year North America and India would be contributing a lot.