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Featured Intel Once Again Exits The Wi-Fi AP/Router Biz

Discussion in 'General Wireless Discussion' started by thiggins, Apr 28, 2020.

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  1. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    CARLSBAD, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- MaxLinear, Inc. (NYSE: MXL) a leading provider of radio frequency (RF), analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits for the connected home, wired and wireless infrastructure, and industrial and multimarket applications, announced today that MaxLinear and its wholly owned subsidiary have entered into a definitive agreement with Intel Corporation under which MaxLinear would, subject to customary closing conditions, acquire Intel’s Home Gateway Platform Division assets in an all-cash, asset transaction valued at $150 million. The Home Gateway Platform Division comprises Wi-Fi Access Points, Ethernet and Home Gateway SoC products deployed across operator and retail markets.
    [Press release]
     
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  2. Trip

    Trip Very Senior Member

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    Interesting. Do we see this as good for the market or bad? And if you're Qualcomm, Broadcom and/or Marvell, what do you suppose they think? If anything?
     
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  3. Razor512

    Razor512 Senior Member

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    Hopefully it doesn't have any direct or indirect impact on their Ethernet NICs, as well as their WiFi adapters.
     
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  4. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    If it affects Intel's adapter products, both Ethernet and Wi-Fi, it's bad. Intel is pretty much the only company making notebook AX adapters. Qualcomm has an M.2 card, but I haven't seen it in any products. Broadcom has said they are not interested in that market and have no M.2 format adapter. They're focused on phones.

    As far as the AP, gateway and home router market, Intel hasn't made much headway against Broadcom for AX (neither has Qualcomm). So, aside from orphaning the few products they were designed into, this will have little effect on the consumer Wi-Fi market. However, I don't know how many service providers this leaves in the lurch.
     
  5. avtella

    avtella Very Senior Member

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    Hopefully means the client side adapter business stays. I've usually found Intel to have the most stable client adapters at least in PC/Laptop side with Broadcom being the worst.

    And yeah the 6290 2x2 client side chip from QCA though mentioned long back isn't in products yet AFAIK. However the listing for the new XPS 17 9700 mentions the "Killer AX500 DBS" as an option, guessing that's dual band simultaneous. Might be the QCA6290 in the wild or a BCM4375.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2020
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  6. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    BCM4375 does not exist in M.2 format AFAIK. Do you know different? :)
     
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  7. avtella

    avtella Very Senior Member

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    Guess it’s probably the 6290 then:D.
     
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  8. avtella

    avtella Very Senior Member

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    Last edited: Apr 29, 2020
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  9. RMerlin

    RMerlin Super Moderator

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    Azurewave (can't recall who owns that now?) is even worse IMHO...

    On the Ethernet side, anyone who needs something solid and reliable for a server/firewall knows that Intel is the only name in town. Motherboard manufacturers know that, and they also go with Intel for higher-end motherboards, leaving their lower-end SKUs on Realtek.

    So, I do hope that wifi/Ethernet clients will remain with Intel. They must have a pretty good market for these two, particularly now that they have a semi-monopoly on the AX client front.
     
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  10. avtella

    avtella Very Senior Member

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    If I recall correctly Azurwave just uses BCM chips almost exclusively.

    Yeah on the high quality nic side it’s pretty much Chelsio and then Intel, good drivers and reliable hardware. Mellanox is now in nVidia’s hands. Most of the firewall/server/NAS people seem to unite in hatred of anything Realtek based, and BCM seems so-so.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2020
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  11. System Error Message

    System Error Message Part of the Furniture

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    its only for wifi, they're doing well in the wired NIC business.

    The main reason is that while intel chips did decently for wifi they have driver bugs which are pretty annoying such as getting frequent disconnects and issues reconnecting after hibernation/sleep.

    So this leaves us with the other ones. Qualcomm i know is good when it comes to range, whereas broadcom is better on stability. When i did tested the AC1900 from asus for how far i could go to utilising wifi AC i used an ASUS dual channel USB wifi stick to get up to 90% as the best case scenario
     
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  12. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    I've have it from a good source that this deal does not include Wi-Fi STA (AX200, etc.). It's part of the PC business. Although it was not stated specifically, I think the PC business would also include Ethernet NICs.
     
  13. RMerlin

    RMerlin Super Moderator

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    That would make sense to me. They probably got rid of a platform/product division, like when they ditched their cable division a few years ago. But the Wifi and Ethernet components remain very valuable products, often tied pretty closely with the rest of their PC/CPU hardware.
     
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  14. sfx2000

    sfx2000 Part of the Furniture

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    I agree...

    It the gateway platform business only - Cable Modems, Residential Gateways, Router SoC's and WiFi (ex-Lantiq), etc...

    The Intel WiFi chipsets that align with the PC platforms, along with the Ethernet parts stay with intel directly.
     
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  15. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    yea.
     
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  16. unmesh

    unmesh Occasional Visitor

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    Which one?

    I'm planning to do some comparisons between the Intel M.2 Wifi in my laptop and USB wifi sticks

    Thanks
     
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  17. TheLostSwede

    TheLostSwede Regular Contributor

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    Azurewave is a module maker, they just don't really explain what chips they use for which module, which is really annoying.

    Is that so? Intel seems to be less and less reliable. They have implemented a new revision due to the first revision having some major flaws, i.e. instead of 2.5Gbps speed, you got 10Mbps against a lot of other 2.5Gbps devices.
    https://www.techpowerup.com/266335/...ce-rocket-lake-s-2h-2020-production-confirmed

    In fact, Realtek had them beat by a year when it comes to 2.5Gbps and their product works flawlessly.

    Intel will continue to make client Wi-Fi devices, this news post was mainly about them selling off their Lantiq purchase at a loss of $195...
     
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  18. System Error Message

    System Error Message Part of the Furniture

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    USB-AC56
     
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  19. System Error Message

    System Error Message Part of the Furniture

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    realtek beat intel by focusing on the media converter chip, and lets the CPU handle the rest. Intel NICs have a lot more features and usually work better especially for virtualisation, but in the consumer space intel has lost and as i mentioned bugs.
     
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  20. avtella

    avtella Very Senior Member

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    Merlin was referring to the server/firewall side.

    Realtek is from what I’ve seen generally looked down upon among both users and developers of various server/firewall distros for being unreliable along with buggy offload functions. pFsense for example in the checksum offload section of the settings menu gives Realtek a shout out as an example for adapters that grenerally have broken implementations. Compared to Realtek I think Intel and Chelsio generally have a much better track record though. I do recall reading that article where the Intel 2.5Gbps nic has issues with certain Netgear and Juniper switches but not Cisco or Aruba.

    At the same time some where having crashes from buggy Realtek 2.5Gb nic drivers on Gigabyte x570 mobos, though fixed in newer updates. I can’t recall the last time I had an Intel nic or WiFi card crash my computer but have had plenty of experiences with Realtek. They have gotten better and I personally haven’t had issues with recent client side products at least. I probably would not use their cards in a firewall or a sever though.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2020
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