European design centre for Epson

European design centre for Epson
Richard Wilson Epson Electronics is the latest Japanese semiconductor supplier to reveal plans for a European technology design centre. The UK is one of three locations being considered for the centre, part of Epson’s plans to enter the GSM baseband chipset market. “We will announce our European design centre later this year, the four sites we are considering are London, Scotland, France and Germany,” said Takao Yokoyama, president of Epson Electronics Europe. Yokoyama said the final decision on a location has yet to be made, but it is understood that the strength of the UK as a centre for GSM and third generation mobile development and production puts it in a strong position. “We will also consider where best we can find the most suitable designers,” added Yokoyama. The centre will initially include 20 engineers. Work will focus on software and firmware development for Epson’s new GSM baseband processor chips. There will also be work on third generation and UMTS mobile technologies and new silicon products for the mobile communications market. Epson is developing its first GSM chipset for a European mobile phone customer, based on the ARM7 and OAK DSP cores. The firm, which is aiming for European sales of DM500m (?170m) this year, hopes to build on its existing mobile phone business which includes handset LCDs, drivers and crystals. “Potentially we could build up to 80 per cent of the handset,” said Yokoyama.


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