Wireless Wonders for 2006

01/20/2006 12:00 am EST

Focus:

By focusing exclusively on one investment sector, Nikhil Hutheesing has become the industry leading expert on the wireless world, continually offering an in-depth analysis of the technology, trends, and investment opportunities within this arena. Here are his favorites for 2006. 

"Qualcomm (QCOM NASDAQ), our more conservative play for 2006, has built a thriving business by licensing its intellectual property, such as CDMA technology, to equipment manufacturers as well as wireless service providers. But this year, the company promises to offer wireless carriers a system that will let you get television on your cell phone. This could be big.

"To do this, Qualcomm is spending $800 million to build a nationwide mobile video and multimedia multicasting network. It's developing a chipset for the networks called the MBD1000 that will allow the network to seamlessly interface with CDMA2000 and WCDMA systems. Qualcomm's network will offer a TV service called MediaFLO based on its FLO (Forward Link Only) technology.

"I expect that 2006 will be a banner year for iPASS (IPAS NASDAQ), our speculative pick for the year ahead. iPass provides companies with the ability to let their employees connect to their corporate networks easily. The company also provides high-level security, making the service highly attractive. Recently, iPass has been struggling because its service is predominantly offered over narrowband networks- or dial-up service.

"All that is now changing. iPass has been actively working with wireless service providers to put together a wireless broadband network. That's what companies want and that's what employees want. Not only does wireless enable connectivity from anywhere, but because it's broadband, it allows employees to tap into corporate programs that require great bandwidth. The move to wireless should provide iPass with new renewed growth in the years ahead."

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