If you can't beat 'em, join 'em. QUALCOMM, bringing up the rear, has finally joined the Wi-Fi Alliance. The company's executives used to spend a lot of energy bashing WiFi. More recently they have switched targets and now concentrate their fire on WiMax. What has not changed is the self-serving quality, and a certain touch of the absurd, for much of what emanates from QUALCOMM regarding these two technologies. Now these executives say they wanted to make sure the company's 3G cellular data and voice chipsets will be compatible with the wireless networking technology. QUALCOMM holds numerous patents in cellular technology for both CDMA-based systems and 3G systems using GSM networks. It has allowed that it was planning to make its chipsets work with WLANs.
Many mobile phone makers use QUALCOMM's chipsets and intellectual property, and they have been supportive of incorporating WiFi technology into their gear. Cellular operators have been less enthusiastic about embracing WiFi, and many of them are still wondering how their business model will survive the inexorable emergence of the WLAN-VoIP combination and mobile WiMax.