Motorola has a good idea where its bread will be buttered in the future. In what looks like a savvy move, the cable set-top box king is buying Kreatel Communications, a Swedish maker of IPTV set-top boxes for phone companies, as it seeks to expand its reach beyond cable.
Motorola announced the purchase earlier today. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. But it makes great sense on the surface for Motorola, which is now developing digital set-tops based on IPTV technology for both Verizon Communications and AT&T Inc.
In Kreatel, Motorola will get a company that already supplies IPTV set-tops for such big European telecom companies as Spain's Telefonica, Sweden's TeliaSonera and the Netherlands' KPN. Kreatel relies on a Linux-based solution to offer IPTV middleware and applications. Not surprisingly, Motorola termed the deal "a natural complement" to its end-to-end digital technology and said the agreement "particularly addresses the growing need for IPTV-based digital set-tops."