AMD acquires Nitero IP, are wireless VR headsets coming?

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AMD has announced its acquisition of intellectual property (IP) and engineers from tech firm Nitero.

This news is interesting for two reasons, the first is that AMD very rarely acquires the IP of other firms and the second is what Nitero does.

The firm has designed what is described as a “phased-array beamforming millimeter wave chip”. One of those words – beamforming – might seem familiar because it’s technology that’s employed in a number of wireless routers.

Nitero’s chip is unique in that it uses the 60GHz frequency also known as 802.11ad Wifi. This high performance frequency is tipped to be a cord-cutters dream, allowing high-speed connections that can reach theoretical speeds of 7Gbps. More than that however, the technology could be used to stream UHD video from say your smartphone to your TV without a dip in quality.

A chip such as that would be perfect for a VR headset and could eliminate the nest of cables many folks find intimidating or unsightly.

“Unwieldly headset cables remain a significant barrier to drive widespread adoption of VR,” AMD chief technology officer, Mark Papermaster said in a statement.

“Our newly acquired wireless VR technology is focused on solving this challenge, and is another example of AMD making long-term technology investments to develop high-performance computing and graphics technologies that can create more immersive computing experiences.”

Nitero co-founder and chief executive officer will join AMD as corporate vice president of AMD’s Wireless IP division. The entire staffing contingent of the firm will also be joining AMD according to a report by Forbes.

With the acquisition of Nitero, it appears as if AMD wants to sell users a complete VR package complete with CPU, GPU and headset. If it can do that at a cheap enough price and make it wireless, well then we guess it would be safe to say that AMD is back.


Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.