SK Telecom and Magnolia Broadband
Sign MoU to Establish Strategic Relationship
Leading Mobile Operator and Magnolia sign agreement to deploy Magnolia’s
DiversityPlus? Antenna Diversity technology and establish Strategic Relationship
SEOUL, KOREA and CLINTON, N.J. – (October 13, 2003) – SK Telecom (NYSE: SKM), Korea’s leading wireless telecommunications services provider and Magnolia Broadband, Inc., a fab-less semiconductor company and innovator of radio frequency (RF) solutions for the cellular industry, jointly announced today that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation in developing and commercial deployment of Magnolia’s DiversityPlus? technology. The agreement also outlined cooperation in the areas of joint development and marketing of Magnolia’s patented technology, as well as consideration of SK Telecom to invest in Magnolia’s future funding rounds.
With the conclusion of extensive and successful testing conducted in challenging environments like Seoul and New York City this year, SK Telecom puts confidence in the mobile terminal processed transmit and receive antenna diversity of Magnolia. The benefits include doubling network capacity, improving network coverage & data throughput and extending battery life by as much as 30 minutes of talk time.
“SK Telecom was the first operator to deploy CDMA technology commercially in the world and we have been leading the way in migrating to 3G technologies such as cdma2000 1xRTT and 1xEVDO,” said Dr. Joo Sik Lee, Vice President, SK Telecom. “As we have extensively tested Magnolia’s solution, we see the potential deployment of Magnolia’s technology as enhancing our position as a global leader in using novel CDMA technologies to increase the high level of service we offer to our customers.”
DiversityPlus? is a family of RF chipset products designed around Magnolia’s unique algorithms for CDMA mobile terminals. By combining transmit and receive RF signals from two antennae in a unique way, the wireless operators can double their network capacity and significantly improve coverage and data rates to the individual subscriber.
“We are excited to bring our unique chipset solution to one of the world’s most innovative CDMA operators,” said Haim Harel, CEO of Magnolia. “SK Telecom’s trust in our technology after extensive testing confirms that our efforts to improve performance of their network and services has been extremely successful. We are very confident that the attributes of DiversityPlus? will become standard technology for all CDMA operators around the world.”
Magnolia expects that it will have its first commercial prototypes of the RF Chips and software algorithm by the end of 2003. It is anticipated that its DiversityPlus? technology will be deployed in consumer handsets by 2004.
About SK Telecom
Established in 1984 as Korea Mobile Telecommunications Service Co. and renamed in 1997, SK Telecom Co., Ltd. is Korea’s leading information and communications company and a rapidly emerging player in the global telecom industry. SK Telecom merged with Shinsaegi Telecom in January 2002 and the subscriber base is now more than 18 million. In January 1996, the company launched the world’s first commercial CDMA cellular phone service in Korea. In October 2000, SK Telecom introduced the world’s first cdma2000 commercial service in Korea and has expanded that service to 81 major cities as of August 2001. Already this service is able to provide 153.6 Kbps high-speed data service and support various multimedia contents. In June 2001, SK Telecom began the world’s first commercial service that offers motion pictures through a wireless handset without the need for peripheral devices, taking its cdma2000 1x network to a new level of usage. In January 2002, SK Telecom opened up a new year of mobile communication by providing the world’s first synchronized commercial IMT-2000 (cdma2000 1xEVDO) Service in Incheon City on January 28, 2002.
About Magnolia Broadband
Magnolia is an innovative developer of semiconductors for the wireless industry and the first company to provide diversity antenna technology using unique RF chipset products that incorporate both transmit and receive diversity. By using a unique RF (Radio Frequency) chipset product and algorithm, it incorporates a novel way of combing RF signals from two antennae for both transmit and receive signals in the mobile terminal, enabling carriers to serve twice as many subscribers within the same wireless infrastructure while boosting phone coverage, data rates and battery performance. Carriers and consumers also benefit from more reliable connections, improved quality of service while having small impact on cost.
Leading CDMA carriers and mobile terminal manufacturers have tested Magnolia’s technology. Since its inception in 2001, Magnolia has raised $15 million in capital from notable investors like Draper Fisher Jurvetson Gotham, ECentury Capital Partners, SCP Private Equity Partners, Selway Partners and Silverstar Holdings. Magnolia has filed numerous patents related to its core technology and partnered with semiconductor industry notables such as Jazz Semiconductor, and Amkor Technology. For more information, go to www.magnoliabroadband.com.
Magnolia Contact information
Director of Accounts
Fusion Public Relations
570 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10018
SK Telecom Contact Information
Dr. Won Suk Chung
Senior Manager, Advanced Technology Group
9-1, Sunae-dong, Pundang-gu
Sungnam City, Kyunggi-do, Korea