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3G/HSPA

Sierra Wireless Buys Junxion

Wireless modem maker Sierra Wireless Inc. (Nasdaq: SWIR; Toronto: SW) has snapped up the assets of startup Junxion Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

Seattle-based Junxion, which rose from the ashes of wireless data operator Monet Mobile Networks in September 2004, developed a box that allows users to remotely connect to WiFi and share cellular connections. (See Junxion's Cell Through.)

The "Junxion Box" is certified with several wireless carriers and allows utilities and enterprises to deploy WiFi connectivity in places that have cellular coverage but no wired connections. For instance, the Junxion Box has been used to provide 802.11 links on buses. (See Wireless Bus Fuss and Making Tracks With the MTA.)

The concept of the Junxion Box is not far removed from the currently trendy idea of the femtocell or home basestation. Both are forms of wireless repeaters. The Junxion box, however, uses a 3G cellular connection to front-end other wireless connections, while femtocells offload wireless traffic onto a wired connection. This makes the box more suitable for remote office and other enterprise connectivity tasks.

Junxion's technology is supported by AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), and Verizon Wireless and incorporated in some Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) cellular routers. (See Qualcomm's Home Invasion.) The firm's main competitor in the remote wireless game is Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO).

Sierra plans to integrate Junxion's products with its mobile and machine-to-machine groups.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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