Yesterday Ericsson said it would take over the slim modem business of ST-Ericsson and run it as a separate unit.
Ericsson said the company wants to be the number three player in the slim modem market, and the company has given a 18-24 month time frame to achieve that.
Sttrategy Analytics points out that, to achieve the number three position, Ericsson would have to score iPhone or Galaxy S design-wins - because the market for slim modems is relatively limited outside of Apple and Samsung.
Ericsson could potentially pursue M2M, USB dongles, tablets and other non-handset markets as an opportunity to expand its slim modem business, but this would put it in direct competition with Intel and many small, innovative LTE baseband suppliers such as Sequans, Altair and GCT Semi.
Another possibility for Ericsson's thin modem business, as suggested by Mike Bryant, is for Motorola/HTC/Nokia/Sony et al to club together to ensure an alternative to Qualcomm.
'We were somewhat surprised by the lack of buyers for ST-Ericsson's modem business given ST-Ericsson's 4G LTE products, which are production-ready,' says Strategy Analytics.