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Broadcom predicts superfast Wi-Fi, in-car systems and NFC to dominate CES 2013

12 Dec 2012
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The spread of faster Wi-Fi, enterprise consumerisation and the growth of in-car networks will dominate the headlines at January's CES conference, according to officials with networking firm Broadcom.

The company said that its projected hot topics for the 2013 conference and the months following would see vendors looking to release devices which increasingly rely on emerging mobile and wireless networking platforms.

Broadcom said NFC communication is set to be one of the hottest issues of the year, with the slow-but-sure introduction of NFC-equipped handsets reaching a critical mass with consumers.

Mohamed Awad, associate product line director for Broadcom's mobile and wireless group, said that the advancement of NFC would simplify the process and synching devices and reduce the integration 'friction' which had previously prevented users to share data between home and mobile devices.

"It is about taking this devices that may have NFC and enabling them so you can do that from device to device," he explained.

"I can take any two devices and touch them together and something happens, you need to get over those hurdles."

Broadcom believes that NFC will combine with other platforms, including low-energy Bluetooth connections, GPS and wireless broadband to create a system in which personal and mobile devices can be easily synched with connected systems including home entertainment centres, security systems and automobiles.

Further advances in the personal electronics space are also expected to be pushed by the consumerisation of enterprise IT. Broadcom execs suggested that as firms look to accommodate mobile devices in the workplace, strain will be placed on the wireless network, forcing administrators to re-think their network architectures.

Broadcom itself hopes to capitalise on the trend by combining the emerging wireless formats into a single chip. The company said that its 43341 chip would combine NFC hardware with AM and FM connections as well as the 5G Wi-Fi connectivity standard.

The company believes that the new 5G Wi-Fi standard will also get a boost in the coming months. Currently limited PC models, the company predicted that a number of smartphones, tablets and TV sets sporting the platform will be unveiled at CES, and many will be on the shelves in time for the 2013 Mobile World Congress show in February.

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Shaun Nichols

Shaun Nichols is the US correspondent for He has been with the company since 2006, originally joining as a news intern at the site's San Francisco offices.

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