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RF Shorts – Oct. 13, 2011

Motorola's Robert W. Galvin Dies
Robert W. Galvin, the man responsible for moving a depression-era family-run car radio and military communications business into one that manufactured color TV sets, cell phones and many other devices we take for granted today, died this week at age 89. The New York Times has a nice article on his life and leadership of Motorola in the article Robert W. Galvin, Who Ushered Motorola Into the Modern Era, Dies at 89.

Robert D. McFadden wrote: "The keys to success, he often said, were the foresight to exploit new markets; diversified high-quality product lines; and progressive management. He practiced them by giving priority to new technologies, moving into Asian and European markets, enforcing quality controls and customer-satisfaction goals, and establishing early profit-sharing plans for employees."

CTIA and NAB Unite in Spectrum Fee Opposition reporter Juliana Gruenwald writes CTIA, NAB Find Something They Can Agree On. She says, "After trading barbs over spectrum legislation for the last year, it seems broadcasters and the wireless industry have found something that can unite them: opposition to new spectrum fees."

Gruenwald reported that NAB CEO Gordon Smith and CTIA CEO Steve Largent penned a letter on the matter to the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction that stated in part: "This legislation ignores the considerable annual regulatory fees already borne by our respective industries and the tens of billions of dollars in private capital expended annually by wireless, satellite and commercial, non-commercial and public radio operators alike to build networks and invest in the infrastructure necessary to serve the American public."

Anik F2 Shutdown Halts Northern Canada Communications
Northern Canada lost a key part of its communications infrastructure last Thursday when the Anik F2 telecommunications satellite suffered a malfunction at 6:36 a.m. that caused it to go into "safe mode."

Tariq Malik, managing editor, wrote Canadian Satellite Malfunction Leaves Thousands Without Communications. Some 39 communities were affected by the shutdown, and more than 1,000 people were left stranded when 48 flights were canceled by airline First Air due to the satellite malfunction. Subscribers to the "WildBlue" satellite Internet service using Anik F2 were also affected, according to a ViaSat press release. reported on the situation last Friday: Anik F2 Satellite Returns to Full Service. Saying "The software error that led to the anomaly appears to have been caused by a software update that was recently provided by the satellite manufacturer. That particular software update was not re-loaded onto the satellite."

CrestaTech Purchases Xceive Assets
Tuesday CrestaTech issued a press release CrestaTech Marches Toward Universal TV on Any Device; Purchases Assets from Silicon Tuner Leader, Xceive. The Xceive XC5000 silicon tuner is used in a wide range of TV products, including several ATSC USB tuners. CrestaTech estimates that 20 million TV sets had been produced using Xceive silicon tuners, and said that it will continue to support the Xceive brand RF tuner business. The release stated: "CrestaTech's purchase of Xceive assets will allow for ongoing revenue generation from the profitable TV tuner business, the rapid development of enhanced next-generation RF tuner chip designs, as well as the expansion of business beyond the TV, like all-in-one PCs and tablets applications."

"This is a major turning point, as CrestaTech now is poised to become the next major tuner powerhouse," said Brian Mathews, VP of marketing for the Xceive brand at Crestatech. "By combining the established engineering expertise and technologies of CrestaTech and Xceive, and taking advantage of synergies in the distribution channel and manufacturing, CrestaTech has the ability to drive the global transition to universal TV on any smart device."

From this statement, it sounds as if Crestatech has the potential to be a major player in the growing ATSC Mobile DTV market.