News | March 3, 2005

MBOA-SIG, WiMedia Alliance Merge

San Francisco -- Intel Developer Forum -- The WiMedia Alliance and the MultiBand OFDM Alliance Special Interest Group (MBOA-SIG) announced today that the complementary groups have merged into a single organization. Operating as the WiMedia Alliance, Inc., the combined organization continues to drive the standardization and adoption of ultra wideband (UWB) for high-speed wireless, multimedia-capable personal area connectivity. Completing the original two groups' promised deliverables is a priority for the WiMedia-MBOA.

The WiMedia-MBOA is conducting an intellectual property review of the MBOA-SIG's physical (PHY) layer specification, which has already been distributed to MBOA-SIG members who are building products. The organization is also finalizing the MBOA-SIG's medium access control (MAC) layer specification. Applications such as Wireless USB, Wireless 1394, and wireless IP will use the WiMedia-MBOA's common radio platform based on the MBOA-SIG's PHY and MAC specifications.

Concurrent efforts include developing application profiles for UPnP/IP technologies as well as completing specifications such as the WiMedia convergence architecture (WiMCA) and the WiMedia network protocol adaptation (WiNet) layer. Lastly, the WiMedia-MBOA has begun defining its certification and interoperability program: testing suites will address WiMedia-MBOA specification usage in Wireless USB and Wireless 1394 applications in addition to the total wireless IP UWB technology stack.

"It just makes sense to formally combine the groups," said Glyn Roberts of STMicroelectronics and former president of The WiMedia Alliance. "There's a great deal of common member activity and interest. And, the two organizations have been aggressively supporting the same technology, regulatory, and marketing goals for a while now. We're confident the result will be a true 'win-win' for us and the industry."

The WiMedia-MBOA's new membership structure includes three classification levels -- contributor, adopter and supporter -- and allows for a fair and formal transition of MBOA-SIG members. Additionally, the organization has newly-elected officers:

  • President: Stephen R. Wood, Intel
  • Vice President: Kursat Kimyacioglu, Philips
  • Vice President: Jon Rosdahl, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.
  • Secretary: Roberto Aiello, Staccato Communications
  • Treasurer: Mark Fidler, HP

"Since the WiMedia Alliance's formal endorsement of MBOA's specifications, the groups have been working in tandem on several UWB industry initiatives," Wood said. "The merge is the logical move, and we're excited to be working as one organization."

Source: WiMedia Alliance