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Nokia buys Australian radio systems company

Nokia has acquired Mesaplexx, an Australian developer of RF filtering technology.

Nokia says it made the acquisition, whose terms are undisclosed, to boost its radio capabilities in the networks business.

“Mesaplexx has unique know-how in developing compact, high performance radio frequency (RF) filter technology for the mobile industry,” said Marc Rouanne, executive vice president for mobile broadband at Nokia.

“Those familiar with radio technologies know that while there has been a lot of progress in recent years, filters are one area where new innovations can still yield significant improvements in performance,” said Rouanne. “Mesaplexx’s stand-out expertise has the potential to achieve that.”

Brisbane based Mesaplexx was founded in 2003 and operates out of Australia and the UK. In 2007 it received funding from CM Capital and Southern Cross Venture Partners, and has been developing products and intellectual property in electromagnetic engineering, high temperature superconductors, ceramic, substrate technologies and mathematical modelling as well as RF filters.

Its RF filter technology is called xCube, which its website says “has the capability to radically improve the performance of and active antenna systems (AAS), carrier grade small cells and compact radio systems, enabling increases in network capacity of up to 65%.”

An AAS integrates radio into the antenna at the top of a mobile phone tower, enabling more intelligence to be added to the antenna to increase capacity. xCube also uses very little power, enabling ‘cool running’, and increasingly important issue in 4G LTE base stations that dissipate large amounts of heat.

Rouanne said Nokia is continually improving its radio systems whilst making them smaller, lighter and more efficient. “Adding the very advanced Mesaplexx technology can enhance them further, potentially reducing small cells form factor by 30% or more.

“Every base station needs RF filters, for example to ensure that spectrum can be shared within the same geographical area and that the same antenna can serve for both transmit and receive purposes.

“Mesaplexx expertise could help improve radio performance, leading to higher capacity and more efficient networks. This technology would also help reduce overall cost and power consumption and keep radio signal loss to a minimum.”

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Graeme Philipson

Graeme Philipson is senior associate editor at iTWire and editor of sister publication CommsWire. He is also founder and Research Director of Connection Research, a market research and analysis firm specialising in the convergence of sustainable, digital and environmental technologies. He has been in the high tech industry for more than 30 years, most of that time as a market researcher, analyst and journalist. He was founding editor of MIS magazine, and is a former editor of Computerworld Australia. He was a research director for Gartner Asia Pacific and research manager for the Yankee Group Australia. He was a long time IT columnist in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, and is a recipient of the Kester Award for lifetime achievement in IT journalism.