US-based chip designer Qualcomm Inc has decided to join a 5G technology development alliance launched earlier this year by the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA), Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) and government-sponsored institutes.
An executive from Chunghwa, the nation’s biggest telecom, confirmed the news after local Chinese-language media on Monday reported that Qualcomm representatives had visited the alliance’s offices with a request to join.
The executive, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told reporters that while details related to Qualcomm’s participation still need to be worked out, its presence would be welcomed.
Qualcomm is expected to help accelerate the building of an advanced 5G ecosystem and aid the alliance achieve its goal of launching commercial applications in at least two cities in 2020.
Qualcomm would also provide a 5G technology testing platform to its local partners to help them commercialize their products and penetrate the global 5G communications market, local media reported.
Chunghwa in January announced that it had teamed up with the ministry, the government-sponsored Industrial Technology Research Institute and the Institute for Information Industry to form the alliance.
The government hopes that with the help of the alliance, Taiwan would build on its experience with the development of chips, Internet communications, small cell stations and end-user electronics devices to facilitate development of 5G technology in the nation.
The alliance has recruited more than 40 local tech firms, including handset chip designer MediaTek Inc (聯發科), Asustek Computer Inc (華碩), HTC Corp (宏達電), the world’s biggest industrial computer manufacturer Advantech Co (研華), Quanta Computer Inc (廣達) and broadband solution provider Sercomm Corp (中磊).
Qualcomm said it would launch a new operations center in Taiwan early next year as part of its commitment to invest US$700 million in the nation over the next five years.
The company pledged the investment as part of an antitrust settlement it reached with the Fair Trade Commission on Aug. 10.
Qualcomm also paid a NT$2.73 billion (US$88.29 million at the current exchange rate) fine, considerably lower than the NT$23.4 billion fine initially imposed in October last year.
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