Intel Invests in Jajah
TMCnet Contributing Editor
Mobile phones are no more just the instruments that make and receive calls. In the ever evolving world of mobile phone technology, a modern mobile phone can do almost anything. Major companies across the world, such as Motorola and Nokia (News
) have been including more features in the modern day mobile phone for example. Another chip making giant, Intel is now eyeing 'web phone in a chip' and has invested in the web-based phone-calling company, Jajah Inc.
Jajah provides free or low-cost global calling service and caters to more than two million users. The company has agreed to take up the patent, marketing and distribution deals in this agreement. Although there are no definite plans on the deal, it will provide Jajah’s access to Intel's (News
) sales channel of countless Personal Computer makers, software developers, dealer and many others. It could also lead to Jajah becoming a desktop icon later this year.
But the major focus of the deal is the long term plan of embedding the Internet phone-calling technology of Jajah into microprocessors, or central processor units (CPUs) which is Intel’s main area of success. With this deal, Jajah aims to a bring best-of-class, next generation solution to “any CPU
for use on any computing device,” according to reports
. Until now, Jajah was asking its customers to use its service through a web browser. But the deal with Intel allows Jajah to provide its customers a service that runs on PC desktops. An early version of this service may be released soon.
As of late, Intel has been investing in many ventures across the globe. It’s investment in the Jajah deal was one among the six investments amounting to $31 million announced at its annual CEO Summit in Carlsbad, California. Intel is planning another investment in Jajah and details about will be revealed later this year. Other investments include an investment in China's largest social network company, 51.com, and Phoenix Microelectronics, a chip designer in China. Investments have also been made in Aternity, a maker of application management software in Israel and a portable computing firm, Ceedo. In Europe, Intel recently invested in U.S.-based education network, Tutor.com. In total, Intel Capital has invested $1.07 billion in 91 deals during 2006.
Their calling card phone services have slowly started evolving into VoIP
services and they are aggressively attacking the market which was once dominated by players like Skype (News
). New players like Grand Central, Jangl, Jaxtr and Rebtel have been offering innovative plans and attracting a lot of customers and as the competition in the market heats up, access to Intel's intellectual property is crucial for companies like Jajah. The company realizes this and is planning to license 16 of its patents, which cover VoIP and softphones.
This is the third time Jajah is getting funding from outside. Earlier, the company received $9 million from venture capitalists Sequoia Capital and Globespan Capital.
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